The Toledo Fire and Rescue Department showcased its newest tool to spread safety lessons for both children and adults.
Workers adapted a 20-year-old fire truck into an interactive public education rig. Department and city officials unveiled it during a news conference today at Fire Station 12, 3435 Chase St.
The truck is emblazoned with various lessons on fire safety. It boasts colorful graphics on stop, drop, and roll, as well as the basics of performing CPR.
Fire Chief Luis Santiago said he envisions the truck in service at parks, schools, and senior centers to reach the public.
“It kind of sets the tone for what we’re trying to accomplish. Kids will naturally be drawn to it, and what’s nice about it is just about every panel of the truck has a safety message,” Chief Santiago said.
The truck previously logged about 166,000 miles. Aging vehicles typically transition into backup equipment. Older rigs like this one, however, are often traded-in or used for salvage, Chief Santiago said.
Restoration work, including paint and decals, cost about $5,000. The department plans to use it this weekend, Chief Santiago said.
In her remarks, Mayor Paula Hicks-Hudson said the truck is a valuable contribution to the city’s outreach. It serves as an educational and visual toy that can better provide important safety lessons, she said.
Dennis Kookoothe, the department’s public educator, said it will be stocked with different materials depending on the event. Images on the side displaying firefighters’ different roles could also aid recruitment, he said.
“If you don’t see it going down the road, please give your keys to somebody, because you shouldn’t be driving,” he said.
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