bme fire blog

New Ad Campaign Highlights the Significance of Safety Innovations

February 1 marks the official launch of our new ad campaign in Firehouse Magazine. This ad, featured in the February 2019 issue, is first in a series highlighting the aspects that make Boise Mobile Equipment (BME) stand out from competitors. We kick off the campaign with the feature we prioritize daily when building our trucks — safety.

It’s no secret that wildland firefighters face a unique set of hazards when responding to a fire. Falling trees, rough terrain, and vehicle rollovers are only a few of the dangers we take into consideration when designing our apparatus. Thanks to our tubular body construction, cab protectors, and enhanced tilt capability, every BME fire truck is guaranteed to get you there and get you home.

The Steel Skeleton

Just as a human body can’t function without a skeleton, and a building can’t stand without a frame, a truck’s body is only as strong as its framework. Most manufacturers in the industry construct their bodies from formed sheetmetal only, leaving it vulnerable to crushing if an accident occurs. That’s what makes BME different. The safety of our nation’s firefighters is our number one priority, so we aim to build the strongest body in the industry.

Our signature tubular constructed bodies are MIG and TIG welded aluminum, galvanneal, or stainless steel. First we start with 2”x3” tubing to form the body skeleton, wrapping it with 12 gauge stainless steel, galvanneal, or 3/16th inch aluminum. This adds a vital layer of protection for firefighting personnel and reinforces the cab and chassis. In the event of a rollover accident, the cab will not be crushed.

You’ll have an opportunity to interact with this safety feature at Firehouse World 2019.

Proven to Save Lives

On July 15, 2015 a U.S. Forest Service Type 3 was en route to the High Sierra Ranger District in Prather, CA when it was sideswiped by an SUV. It was forced off the road, rolling four times before landing on its side. Since it was a BME-built truck, its tubular constructed body prevented the cab from being crushed and the structural integrity of the body remained intact, resulting in zero fatalities. Nine months later, one of the five firefighters involved in the accident visited our facility to express his gratitude for the tubular constructed body. He believed it helped in saving his and the others’ lives. We were thrilled that our steel framework played a role in his protection.

Rollover accidents don’t always have such happy endings. According to a study conducted between 1990 and 2009, vehicle accidents are shown to be the second leading cause of death among wildland firefighters. The fatality risk only increases when seat belts are not worn, which is sadly not uncommon. That is why we strive to reduce this fatality statistic, building a safer apparatus with tubular body construction.

Photo by California Highway Patrol

Other Safety Innovations

Though our steel framework already greatly increases structural integrity, we are always looking for new ways to improve the safety of our apparatus. That’s why we recently added 4”x4” steel tubing cab protectors to our U.S. Forest Service Water Tenders.

With the fire body protected by a steel framework, we turned our attention to the chassis for our next innovation. Since firefighters spend much of their time in the cab, we added a key safety feature to the chassis to increase occupant protection. Our Water Tenders seemed like the natural place to start, their low bodies making them especially susceptible to rollover damage.

Our 4”x4” steel tubing cab protector has cross-braces that prevent the cab from being crushed level to the tank during a rollover. Its triangulated points, or gussets, provide increased strength and reduce crushing points. The rack is solidly secured to the chassis with triple passed welds, beveled joints, and grade 8 hardware. We also use rubber body mounts to eliminate the vibration caused by traveling over rough terrain or at high speeds.

Another focus of our safety innovation program is the tilt table. We build our trucks with a low center of gravity to allow for a steeper tilt, making them more maneuverable over wildland terrain. While NFPA standards require a tilt of 26.5 degrees, BME apparatus can achieve a tilt of 35.2 degrees. This is just another reason why Boise Mobile Equipment has become the go-to apparatus manufacturer in the wildland industry.

Although we continue to add new innovations, the secret to BME’s superior safety lies chiefly the strength of our material. With options like stainless steel, galvanneal, and 3/16th inch aluminum, you can be certain you’re getting the sturdiest apparatus on the market. Through our collaborative design process, we leave it up to you to decide what materials suit your needs the best. With your safety on the line, we never take shortcuts.

USFS Water Tenders

Keeping You Safe for 20+ Years

Because of the quality that goes into every step of the building process, our trucks have stood the test of time. Some of BME’s earliest apparatus, including a few U.S. Forest Service trucks from the early ’90s, are still in use to this day. Satisfied with their BME trucks’ performance over the last two decades, USFS is continuing to add more BMEs to their fleet.

Other vintage BME models are being auctioned in excellent working condition. Older BME apparatus are quite popular among volunteer fire departments looking for a reliable, cost-effective workhorse. We recently donated a 1980 Western State Pumper to a volunteer fire department in Owyhee County.

Our trucks are built to last because safety is our top priority. Building the BME way means we put thought into every step of the process, constructing high quality apparatus that get the job done year after year. That’s the BME difference.

Local Manufacturer Brings Jobs to Boise

bme is moving
local manufacturer brings jobs to boise


Career Opportunities

Interested in joining the team at Boise Mobile Equipment? Boise Mobile Equipment consists of two fire apparatus manufacturing facilities in Boise, Idaho. Combined, the facilities employ individuals specializing in auto body, welding, fabrication, electrical, sales and support. We are seeking employees who would be proud to build life-saving equipment and become involved with a great company. Please visit our Career Opportunities page for more information or send an email to inquire about openings to employment@bmefire.com

BME Safety Innovations for USFS Water Tenders

USFS Water Tenders

Safety is a critical aspect when designing any apparatus that will be operating in the urban wildland interface. Although some rigs have seating in the rear, the cab of the truck is where firefighters will spend most of their time when responding to incidents. It’s natural that many of the safety features added to protect them will be on the chassis. The initial structural change was made on the USFS Water Tenders to increase safety and durability. 

Rollovers, collapsing tree branches, and rough terrain are just a few of the scenarios Boise Mobile Equipment (BME) takes into consideration when innovating the design of our fire apparatus. There are a myriad of safety elements incorporated into today’s apparatus to protect firefighters on the line; the most recent innovation was our 4”x4” steel tubing cab protectors and tubular body construction.

Protective Shell for Safety

These fire bodies are MIG and TIG Welded Aluminum, Galveneal, or Stainless Steel.  We start the process with 2”x3” tubing to form the body skeleton and wrap it with 12 gauge Stainless, Galveneal, or 3/16th inch Aluminum. The bodies are built with this type of construction to add safety for firefighting personnel, as well as durability. On our existing Type 3 Engines and our new Type 4 and Tactical Tenders, we have elevated the tube behind the cab to add a layer of rollover protection to our vehicles.  

BME added the very first set of 4”x4” steel tubing cab protectors to the USFS Water Tenders. The water tenders have low bodies and were unprotected during rollovers prior to adding the rack. Each piece was manufactured, welded, and assembled at our West Morris Hill location in Boise, ID. The new USFS trucks (Type 3, Type 3 Heavy and Type 4) will have BME’s signature Type 3 tubular construction. These bodies will protect from both steep grade rolling and high speed freeway crashes.

Triangulated points (gussets) are added both to the cab protectors and steel frame for increased strength and to reduce crushing points. We put emphasis on strength with triple passed welds, beveled joints and grade 8 hardware used to secure the rack to the chassis. Lastly, rubber body mounts are used to eliminate vibration when on rough terrain or traveling at high speeds. 

USFS firetruck headache racks

A Safe Build Cannot Outperform Training

We are proud to serve the fire industry with our wildland apparatus; ultimately, our goal is to design an engine that will get firefighters home safely every time. There is no quick-fix or cure all for roll-over accidents, but with adequate training the likelihood of an accident is reduced. Extensive training for both station and volunteer firefighters is critical in avoiding these tragic incidents in the future. 

Firefighters have enough to focus on while they are doing their job and they don’t have time to question if their truck will work. We build our fire trucks “the BME way” which means tubular bodies, stainless steel plumbing, and heavy duty doors. Our clients know they are getting the best wildland trucks on the market and a great team behind them. We have built thousands of wildland trucks and collaborated with some of the best wildland firefighters, municipalities, and government agencies to build the best apparatus in the industry. We know what works and what it takes to get the job done. 

Custom Builds

BME builds custom fire apparatus to meet your departments needs and constantly innovating to fulfil obligations. We don’t just offer option A or B, but work with each customer to understand their specific needs. Through a collaborative effort, we recommend or create a design that will exceed your expectations. Whether you are a small department, large municipality, or a federal contract, you are important to BME and will never be a just a number.

Santa Fe Springs Custom Dual Function Light Rescue

paramedic response unit

Santa Fe Springs came to us with a unique request for a dual function squad unit; this concept is different than most of our trucks but we were able to completely customize this vehicle to meet the customers needs. This rescue unit was designed to be used for environmental incidents and medical rescues. Built on a Dodge 3500 with a Cummins 350 HP Diesel engine, this unit is functional and efficient.

This unit will be used for hazardous situations a few times a month. It will also be called out to investigations, inspections and follow-ups. Santa Fe Spring’s previous environmental response unit lacked protection of hazardous waste materials during transport, installing a ROM Roll-Up Door was a the solution. The bullet lined bed of the truck is designed to safely carry 55 gallon drums. The back of this unit also features a swing-out sampling system with test tubes, clean-up kits, spill kits, and an in-cab refrigerator to keep samples cool on the way to the lab.

Although this truck is primarily used for environmental response, it was important for Santa Fe Springs to have the dual functionality of a rescue as well. This rig is equipped with Code 3 running equipment, ability to transmit out, and a hearing system outfitted for paramedic use. This vehicle has 6 compartments in the body with roll up doors, LED strip lighting, adjustable shelves, and dual slide outs for easy access to equipment.

ENGINE SPECIFICATIONS & FEATURES

2017 Dodge Ram® 3500, SLT, 4x2, Single Rear Wheel

52 Gallon Fuel Tank

ROM Roll-Up Door

Dual Slides

6.7L Cummins Turbo Diesel

Whelen Light Package

Code-3 Running Equipment

Adjustable Shelves

Air Compressor

Swing Out Sampling System w/Test Tubes

Monitor Equipment Station

Refrigerator for Sample Transport

Technical Reference Station

Bullet Lined Platform

Chassis – 2017 Dodge Ram 3500, SLT, 4×2, single rear wheel.

While this may not work for your department, it might be worth it for you to consider building a smaller vehicle for your department. In any case, when designing your new vehicle, take into consideration what the vehicle will be used for and plan for the future. Boise Mobile Equipment will work with your department to design an apparatus to meet your communities needs. For inquiries on this unit or another feel free to contact us at sales@bmefire.com or (208) 338-1444.

Escalon Put’s Xtreme Type 6 Brush Truck to Work

Xtreme type 6 brush truck

The very first Xtreme Aggressive Type 6 ever built by Boise Mobile Equipment (BME), was recently added to the Escalon Fire Departments fleet. The Xtreme Type 6 pushes the ability of Quick Attack for emergency vehicles. BME wanted to create a custom manufactured brush truck that could exceed the capabilities of current trucks on the market. This brush truck was being used as a demo unit prior to being purchased by Escalon Fire Department. This brush truck was put into service on July 30 and utilized the same day on a grass and brush fire in Escalon.

The Xtreme 6 recently made an appearance in the Escalon Times along with firefighters Connor Coker and Ron Gur. Escalon Fire Chief Rick Mello commented on the departments new truck saying, “Essentially it carries 300 gallons of water and has a smaller capacity pump; it is built for wildland firefighting, it’s able to get to areas that are not accessible to larger engines. It carries hand tools, it has a portable pump so we can get water on site … it gives us a few more options.” Read the entire article here on the Escalon Times website.

We believe the Xtreme Type 6 is a great example of BME’s passion to build fire trucks that are ‘go anywhere’ vehicles. For more information, photo’s, specs and engineering behind this Aggresive truck visit our Wildland Xtreme 6 Page. Ready to add an Xtreme 6 to your department or having question? We can be reached at sales@bmefire.com or by phone at (208) 338-1444. 

 

BME Featured in Fire Apparatus Magazine

bme featured in fire apparatus

Boise Mobile Equipment was recently highlighted in a Fire Apparatus Magazine article about discharges and inlets. The article discusses the different assortment of inlets and outlets, according to tactical needs on today’s fire apparatus. Below is a quote from Larry Segreto that was featured in the article.
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Wildland Firefighter Week of Remembrance

Wildland Firefighter

Over many decades, lessons learned from accidents and fatalities that have occurred on wildland fires have led to significant improvements in firefighter education, training, operational practices, and risk management processes. Unfortunately, wildland firefighting remains inherently hazardous, and we continue to experience accidents and fatalities.
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The Importance of Home Fire Sprinkler Systems

home fire sprinklers

A vast majority of fire-related deaths in North America happen at home. There is no better time to bring attention to this problem and it’s solution than during this year’s Home Fire Sprinkler Day. Home Fire Sprinkler Day was a project initiated by NFPA’s Fire Sprinkler Initiative, the Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition and the Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition-Canada. This project tasks fire sprinkler advocates across North America with hosting events on the same day that promote home fire sprinklers.
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Boise Mobile Equipment Lineup at FDIC 2018

FDIC 2018

The world’s most comprehensive training-based conference on firefighting took over Indianapolis, and Boise Mobile Equipment (BME) attended to showcase their latest apparatus and industry expertise. Fire Department Instructors Conference (FDIC) International 2018 took place from April 23–28 in Indianapolis, Indiana, at the Indiana Convention Center and Lucas Oil Stadium. BME’s booth housed two of the Wildland fire apparatus manufacturer’s most recent trucks, including a Model 34 and an Xtreme 6.

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