By Jack Guerino
ADAMS, Mass. — The Adams Volunteer Fire Department received its new custom ladder truck Friday.
"We have a great group of guys excited and ready to drive it," Fire Chief John Pansecchi said.
The new truck was purchased through the federal Assistance to Firefighters Grant program. Assistant Chief David Lennon, who wrote the grant, said the truck in total was just over $1 million but the $809,524 grant covered the lion's share of the purchase.
Lennon said the truck was custom built by Ferrara Fire Apparatus of Holden, La., and has a travel height of 10 feet.
"This truck is definitely custom made ... normally trucks this size have a travel height of 10 feet, 9 inches," he said. "They went way lower on this one and it went through some major engineering. There isn't another truck like it."
He added that part of the cost came from modifying the garage so the new truck could fit. He said the ceiling was notched and the floor was reinforced to hold the extra weight.
Lennon said the truck will replace the 1988 Pierce that is starting to show its age and is not compliant with current truck codes.
He said the truck is the fourth motorized ladder truck the department has owned and is the first platform ladder truck. It is the fourth platform ladder truck in Berkshire County.
Lennon said the grant was submitted in 2014 but it was worth the wait.
"It is a long process but to see something physically here is pretty amazing," Lennon said.
Pansecchi thanked former Chief Paul Goyette, who was instrumental in the grant process.