“It’s stopped for fuel on I-75.  It’s about a half-hour out.  It just passed the Walmart.”  Anticipation was building with each report of the whereabouts of the La Follette Fire Department’s new fire engine.     A large group of firefighters, joined by council members, city employees and others gathered at LFD Station 1 in Downtown La Follette to see the arrival of the new fire truck.  Just after 3 pm Friday, it turned the corner on East Beech Street to cheers, oohhs and aahhs.

TOP PHOTO:  LFD Fire Chief Charles Eldridge (L) receives the keys to the new unit.

“It’s a beautiful truck.  It has everything in the world on it,” said LFD Chief Charles Eldridge.  He went on to say, “We have better trucks (fire) and better equipment than most of your bigger cities.”  See all of Charlie Hutson’s photos HERE.

It was like Christmas Day for firefighters as they thoroughly checked out the new unit

The new engine was built by Rosenbauer at its Lyons, South Dakota.  James West, with Rosenbauer, flew from Atlanta to South Dakota early last week and drove for two and a half days bringing the truck to the Rosenbauer Dealer at Rossville, Georgia, near Chattanooga.  The 1,100 mile drive allowed West to really give the new engine a test drive, give it one last onceover and top it off with fuel just before arriving in La Follette.

It replaces Engine 105 which is coming to  Station 1.  The chief explained that the new truck, Engine 102, was bought mainly for Fire Station Number 2, near the high school.  “It’s every inch we can get in that bay down there,” he said.  (WLAF NEWS PUBLISHED – 05/13/2019-6AM-PHOTOS COURTESY OF WLAF’S CHARLIE HUTSON)