HAMDEN — After several years of fundraising, the Hamden Volunteer Fire Department received a new fire truck Sept. 21 to replace an aging truck, and the department plans to have it ready for service by the second week of October.
The truck, a 2020 Rosenbauer Timberwolf, has four-wheel drive, holds 750 gallons of water and features an electronic pump. It will be replacing a 1997 Smeal truck, according to Fire Chief Jayson Potts.
To pay for the Timberwolf, which costs $415,000, the Hamden Firefighters Association took out a 15 year loan, which it plans to pay off over the course of 12 years, according to Potts. The association additionally made a $70,000 down payment. No tax money will be used to pay for the truck, Potts emphasized.
Potts, who has been fire chief for nearly three years, said that fundraising activities such as the department’s weekly Bingo games, its pancake breakfasts and its chicken noodle dinners have helped the department raise money for the new truck.
The department also plans to sell the 1997 Smeal truck that the Timberwolf replaced, Potts added.
“The best thing about this is it’s gonna help with our ISO ratings,” Potts said. “The lower the ISO rating we have, the better it is for the insurance.”
The Insurance Services Office (ISO) rating ranges from one to ten and is a measurement of how equipped a fire department is to put out fires in a community. The lower the rating, the less costly the insurance for a home.
According to Potts, Hamden currently has an ISO rating of three, putting the village in the top 10% of communities across the country.
“We just wanna thank everybody in our community and surrounding communities for their support in Bingo and with fundraisers and things like that,” Potts said. “If it wasn’t for them, most of the stuff we have — we just don’t have a big tax base here — we couldn’t have the things do if we didn’t do the fundraisers.”