Pictured are Tribal Governing Board Members (seated from L-R) Don Carley, Chairman Louis Taylor and Vice Chairman Tweed Shuman; and standing L-R) from LCO Fire Department Anthony Price and Chief Marvin Mullet, from Enbridge Energy Partners Taylor Whitebird and Jennifer Smith, Tribal Engagement Manager, and Brian Bisonette, LCO's ARPA Coordinator.
By Joe Morey
The Lac Courte Oreilles Fire Department is making some impressive additions to their fire response capabilities after receiving a new ladder fire truck from ARPA funding and is in the process of purchasing a tactical tanker gifted by Enbridge Energy Partners.
According to LCO Fire Chief Marvin Mullet the ladder truck, a 2005 KME 102’ AerialCat Platform, was delivered on Dec. 3 all the way from Union Grove, Alabama.
It was purchased from Brindlee Mountain Fire Apparatus using ARPA grant monies and Mullet said, It was inspected by an Apparatus Technician from Montgomery, Alabama, and was refurbished from the checklist he provided.
“The tribe has the largest exposures in Sawyer County, aside from the Louisiana Pacific Plant, and we want to have the capability to handle our own emergencies,” Mullet stated. “There are many large projects, like the apartments on Round Lake School Road, and the University on Froemel Rd, that will require the fire protection that this apparatus will provide.”
Mullet said the fire department intends to utilize the SKED Rescue System for high angle rescue events. SKED is equipment for hoisting by helicopter in horizontal position spaces. When the patient is packaged, the stretcher becomes rigid. The durable plastic provides protection for the patient while allowing extrication through the most demanding confined spaces.
Mullet also noted, “Operations of an aerial platform require a special set of skills, and the Fire Department will be hosting a Certified Aerial Operations course in January.”
Enbridge came to the LCO Tribal Office on Wednesday, Dec. 6, to present a donation check in the amount of $500,000 to the LCO Fire Department, which they will be using to purchase an Extreme Tactical Tender.
“It will haul 1500 gallons of water with a 500 gallon-per-minute pump. It has double hose reels and a remote-control monitor on the front bumper,” Mullet explained. “It has fixed fan spray nozzles that provide close ground extinguishment. This is a go anywhere truck with all wheel drive, 56-inch military tires and 24” of ground clearance. This truck is also fitted with a stokes basket holder in the cab for back country medical emergencies.”
Mullet said they will be able to respond effectively to emergencies that occur on the pipeline, powerline, and railroad right of ways.
“Anywhere you can drive we, will be able to mitigate the emergency. I would like the LCO Department to be able to respond to any crisis, anywhere, anytime,” Mullet said.
He added that no other department in northern Wisconsin has a tactical tender.
The new ladder truck as it was delivered on Sunday, Dec. 3rd to the LCO Fire Hall.
The future Tactical Tender fire truck, which according to Chief Mullet, is being built to specifications and expected to take 2 to 3 years to build.
Chairman Taylor and Vice Chairman Shuman with Taylor Whitebird (left) and Jennifer Smith, Tribal Engagement Manager for Enbridge.