By Jean Lotus
River Forest's new 105-foot "quint" fire truck/engine was damaged Thanksgiving morning around 9 a.m. A driver en route to get fuel miscalculated the height of a viaduct at Central and Keystone and smashed into the bridge.
"There was extensive damage to the truck," confirmed River Forest Fire Chief James Eggert. "It is out of service and going back to manufacturer."
River Forest purchased the fire apparatus this year for $650,000. The truck is a combination pumping engine and ladder truck. The machine has a pump, water tank, fire hose and ground and aerial ladders. The village decided to purchase their own quint after a similar apparatus they shared with the Village of Oak Park was up for replacement.
The height of the bridge in question is 11 feet, according to posted signs. Eggert said the fire truck is 11 feet, 9 inches tall. There are signs posted in the cab with the height of the apparatus, Eggert said. An investigation into the incident is ongoing, Eggert added.
Representatives from Smeal Fire Apparatus Co. in Snyder, Neb., will visit the department this week to assess damage.
Meanwhile, River Forest shares mutual aid agreements with several other neighboring municipalities and will participate in any fire calls with available trucks and engines, Eggert said.
"It looks like this quint is going back to Nebraska for a while," he said.
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