New ladder truck in Ste. Genevieve helps residents, firefighters

Updated: Mar. 4, 2019 at 7:08 PM CST
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STE. GENEVIEVE, MO (KFVS) - The Ste. Genevieve Volunteer Fire Department got a new ladder fire truck in mid-February.

This was the first ladder truck they have had until the previous one that was put out of service in 2012 due to safety concerns and age.

“We had a 50 foot telesquirt which is similar to a ladder but not quite. It’s more of an elevated stream instead of a ladder,” Ste. Genevieve Volunteer Fire Chief Ken Steiger explained. “In 2012, it was 30-plus years old. We deemed it unsafe to use. We took it out of service and the unit was sold. So this is the replacement for it.”

The new ladder truck was purchased by the city for roughly $730,000. The truck is a Rosenbauer Command Truck that has additional safety features to help firefighters, response time and other tools that will help the people.

Since 2012, firefighters have had various calls in which a ladder truck would have helped with. Steiger said this slowed down response time when they needed some help from other departments that had a ladder truck.

“In the past when we needed a ladder truck, we had to call for a surrounding neighbor,” Steiger informed. “The closest ladder truck to us, for any kind of rescue or fire fighting, was over 30 miles away. So this gives us a faster response with the type of truck it is.”

Steiger said this new truck will help with a number of areas including better safety for everyone and will have the tools if ever a situation were to arise where they needed to rescue someone from a multiple story building or a high location.

“It’s a safety issue for our guys. Making it safer for our volunteers to work,” Steiger said. “It will also make it safe for our citizens that we can get there quicker and get the ladder up and do rescues quicker than waiting 30 minutes or more for another one to come in.”

Steiger also said this has the potential to save money on their homeowners insurance as well.

Steiger said homeowners insurance is based of a rating done by the ISO (Insurance Service Office) based on city services.

Ste. Genevieve was at a ISO Class 4 rating but was bumped down.

“In 2012, when we took our truck out of service, we had to report that we had to take that truck out. So that costs us some points in the ISO which caused us to drop to ISO Class 5 which also increases your homeowners insurance because of the rating,” Steiger explained.

He added they hope this ladder truck will allow more points with their next ISO rating to where homeowners insurances will drop back to the better class 4 rating.

Firefighters will modify the truck for the next several weeks and train on it to make sure they are fully ready for when it goes into service.

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