Wildland Fire Trucks

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.

Sedona Fire District Purchases a Model 34 BME Fire Apparatus

cal fire wildland trucks

Sedona Fire District recently purchased a Model 34 (Cal Fire Spec) from BME through HGAC. At this time we are offering our Cal Fire Spec at an affordable price with Tag-On Opportunities for California Departments and through HGAC for any out-of-California departments wanting this truck. Below is an article published by the Sedona Red Rock News about the acquisition of this BME Fire Apparatus.

“It’s like getting a really great Christmas gift — but one that you have to wait until the following Christmas to open.

By a unanimous vote, the Sedona Fire District Governing Board on Aug. 14 approved the purchase of a new Type 3 fire engine in the amount of $313,405.57. However, delivery of the new truck would be 10 to 12 months from the signing of the contract.

“It’s an apparatus that will carry us for a long, long time,” Chairman Dave Soto said. “It’s definitely a work horse.”

According to a staff report, the district plans for timely replacement of fire apparatus and sets aside funding for the ordering and purchasing of vehicles. The current Type 3, which is assigned to Station 4 in Uptown, has been taken out of service and is due for replacement. The engine being replaced is a 1999 E-One Type 3 four-wheel-drive with 78,100 miles and more than 3,700 engine hours.

The truck was originally purchased in February 1999 for $188,525 with a planned service life of 15 years and was the Oak Creek Canyon fire engine staffed by the canyon volunteers. Fire Chief Kris Kazian said this vehicle has been bumped down in the priority replacement list for several years in the capital replacement plan. Due to the continued and increasing costs of maintenance for this vehicle, it has been taken out of service and is recommended for removal from the SFD fleet, he said.

“We’re replacing a 1999 unit, so it’s run its course,” Kazian said. “It’s see a lot of miles and been a lot of places.”

The report states that failure to buy this replacement vehicle leaves the district without a four-wheel drive Type 3 engine used for both in and outside district wildland fires and may see on average a decrease in the range of $50,000 to $60,000 per year paid to SFD when its assistance is requested. As an off-district Type 3 engine, it has generated in excess of $273,000 of revenue over the the past three years combined.

The manufacturer, Boise Mobile Equipment, has a joint purchasing agreement with California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. This allows other jurisdictions to purchase from the CAL FIRE purchase order contract through the Houston-Galveston Area Council. The HGAC is a nationwide, government procurement service awarded through public competitive procurement process compliant with state statues.

Sedona Fire Battalion Chief Dave Cochrane said he’s not sure how must SFD will save by going this route but that the pricing for the new fire engine being requested is at a significant savings over trying to purchase this truck as an individual agency.

“We’ve come to the point where we can no longer kick the can down the road,” Cochrane said in terms of the engine’s need. Cochrane said the Type 3 engine holds about 500 gallons and being that it is four-wheel drive, is most often used in wildland and forest fires, especially those being battled in California.

SFD has a second Type 3 engine, but it is two-wheel drive and will stay local. A Type 6 engine, which is much smaller and pays less in terms of a daily rental by other agencies, is out of state with a Sedona crew.”

BME Receives 3 Separate Awards from USFS

USFS fire trucks

In the month of September, Boise Mobile Equipment (BME) has received three separate awards totaling over $15 million for production of firefighting apparatuses for the United States Forest Service (USFS). BME will produce 60 wildland engines for the USFS with an option for a 25% increase.

On the order? Type 3’s, Type 3 Heavy, and Type 4’s; which will be ready for delivery in 2019. These wildland fire trucks will be delivered to multiple locations across 10 western states.

Boise Mobile Equipment is a fire truck manufacturer located in Boise, Idaho who has been servicing the nation’s fire, police, and emergency response professionals since 1990. BME fire apparatuses are manufactured to perform in rough terrain and extreme firefighting conditions. BME is dedicated to providing departments with custom design options, superior craftsmanship, and rugged durability. BME offers various types of emergency vehicles including pumpers, tenders, rescues, Wildland Type 3’s, 4’s and 6’s, and a variety of command vehicles. In addition, BME provides equipment and services to law enforcement with its command vehicles, complete up-fitting, and K-9 units.

Aside from its work with US Forest Service, BME has manufactured fire apparatus for CAL FIRE, Bureau of Land Management (BLM), National Park Service (NPS) and multiple municipal and county fire departments throughout the United States.

Interested in purchasing a BME wildland apparatus? Feel free to email us at sales@bmefire.com or visit our wildland page for more information!

Boise Mobile Equipment Apparatus Doors Featured in Firehouse Magazine

apparatus doors

We are proud of the doors we build on our fire apparatus and were recently featured in a Firehouse Magazine article explaining why. Below are some highlights on Larry Segreto’s conversation with Ed Ballam about Boise Mobile Equipments doors.

“Boise Mobile Equipment (BME) an apparatus builder in Boise, ID, with a specialty in wildland apparatus, sells more rigs with form and welded cabinet doors, bucking an industry trend.

Larry Segreto, vice president of BME, said that most of his customers work in very dusty environments and they prefer form welded doors because of the conditions.

“They want doors that work,” Segreto said. “Not to throw stones, but they don’t seem to want roll-up doors.”

Additionally Segreto said BME is “extremely proud” of its doors. He said the company uses aluminum structural tubing for the frame and uses aluminum stress skins on front and back with sheet foam sandwiched between. They also use piano-style hinges with oversized pins to reduce play and wear, Segreto said. “There’s less room for dirt that way,” he added.

As a testimony to the strength of BME doors, Segreto said he once had a customer leave the overhead doors of his apparatus inadvertently open and the doors ended up cutting off five palm trees before being noticed. “Our doors are constructed that heavy,” Segreto said, adding the final door assembly is about two inches thick.

Because of the dusty conditions in which his customers work, BME dovetails the doors into the body and uses a neoprene bulb seal to keep the dust out of the compartments.

“The strength of the door jamb is just as important as the door,” Segreto said. “We want solid framing to the door and we do know that flimsy bodies mean a lot of flex and a lot of popped doors and we don’t want that.”

To read the entire article by Firehouse Magazine please click here.

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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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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Reading Smoke Signals: How Skilled Firefighters Use Smoke to Determine the Characteristics of a Fire

firefighters reading smoke signals

One of the most important skills all firemen must possess in his situational awareness tool bag is the ability to read smoke.  A fire and its subsequent smoke does not delineate between incident commander, officer, operator or a probationary member. Though not an exact science and heralded as only privy to experienced crew members, the ability to read the smoke at any position within the company can help those responding to the incident make better tactical decisions.  Consequently, everyone at the incident should be armed with the ability to read smoke. Smoke can help first responders determine the fires location, growth, toxicity, direction of travel. In the case of a structure fire it helps us predict hostile fire events like smoke explosions, backdrafts and flashovers. In fact, the author of The Art of Reading Smoke, David W. Dodson a fireman that has spent 33 years learning and teaching on the subject says: “Reading smoke can tell us what is happening now and, more importantly, what is going to happen in the future,” said Dodson. “Reading smoke can tell us how big or intense a fire is, maybe where the fire is,” he said. “Watching how fast it is changing can tell if we have seconds or minutes before something happens.”

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Thomas Fire Caps an Unprecedented Fire Season

Thomas Fire

The final California wildfire of the year, Thomas Fire has been decimating much of Ventura and Santa Barbara counties since early December, 2017. In terms of acreage, this final inferno is the largest in the history of the state. In terms of how the fire has spread and behaved, many veterans claim they’ve never seen anything like it.

All up and down the state this season, battling one devastating blaze after another, California has just suffered one of the most destructive fires in its history. The Thomas fire has reached the top of the list of history’s most destructive fires to ever chew through California.

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