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Volunteer fire company raising money for new engine

Posted at 5:45 PM, Jun 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-24 18:01:58-04

RANDALLSTOWN, Md (WMAR) — A Baltimore County volunteer fire company is turning to the community for support after a crash caused substantial damage to their already aging fire engine.

"We want something completely reliable and we’re long overdue for something like that," said station chief Bernard Jones.

The Liberty Road Volunteer Fire Company was already in the process of trying to raise enough money to replace their 28-year-old fire engine, when someone hit it with their car earlier this year.

"A person was trying to illegally pass the fire engine when it had its emergency warning devices on," said Jones.

Jones said the engine is getting fixed right now. The damage was over $30,000 worth.

"One of the air horns blew out of the front bumper. The air system that controls the breaking the horn and some of the safety devices that was actually damaged as well," said Jones.

In the meantime, they are using an engine on loan from the Baltimore County Fire Department. It meets their basic needs but they are trying to raise enough money to get a new one.

"Because our personnel numbers have been increasing. Our response statistics have been increasing so more wear and tear on a 28-year-old fire engine really puts additional strain and makes it less reliable," said Jones. "We actually run probably somewhere close to the upper 6 companies in Baltimore County and we’re a volunteer company so that’s pretty substantial."

The price tag for the new one could be up to $800,000, and especially because of COVID-19, they know it’s going to be a long process.

"We probably have to stretch this out over the course of a year because there’s people out there who haven’t even gone to work and I don’t want to stress my community in that way," said Jones. "Our goal is to give the best service we can possibly give to our community and with a 28-year-old fire engine the likelihood of reliability going down hill is rather imminent."