Shropshire Fire & Rescue Service has commissioned the UK’s first five new generation Scania rescue pumps into service. Two will be based in Telford, two in Shrewsbury and one in Baschurch.

Scania is now providing training for the Service’s instructors, who in turn will deliver training to the operational crews. Once all training has been completed, the vehicles will join Shropshire’s 26 other Scania appliances in providing frontline fire-fighting and rescue services county-wide.

Shropshire’s Assistant Chief Fire Officer Dave Myers comments, “We took our first Scanias back in 2006, since when they have been proving themselves as reliable, robust and dependable. We are now delighted to be making a little bit of history by becoming the first UK operator of new generation Scania pumping appliances, and look forward to them giving us and the public we serve many years of excellent service.”

Based on Scania’s P360 4×2 chassis, the 18-tonnes gross vehicle weight appliances are all equipped with Scania 9-litre 360hp engines driving through fully-automatic Allison MD4000 six-speed gearboxes. To maximise safety in operation, each vehicle is equipped with Scania’s all-steel crew cab, four of which are configured with six seats and one of which has nine. To further enhance crew safety, Shropshire has specified side curtain air bags which provide high levels of protection in the event of a roll-over.

“Safety is obviously a major concern for any Fire & Rescue Service, and the Scania crew cab unquestionably represents the state-of-the-art,” says Andrew Kelcey, Head of Resources for Shropshire Fire & Rescue Service. “That, together with the proven quality and performance of the product and the service and support infrastructure provided throughout Shropshire by our local Scania dealer, West Pennine Trucks, are key factors underpinning our decision to continue purchasing Scania.”

“Due to the rural sparsity of our area, these vehicles have been designed to meet our Enhanced Rescue Pump criteria,” explains Martin Barclay, Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service’s Vehicle Contracts Manager. “This includes a 3,000-litre water tank and the ability to carry sufficient fire and rescue equipment to meet our operational needs. Some of our rural stations can be operating stand alone at incidents and the resources on these appliances enable the crews to operate safely and effectively until support pumps arrive. Fully laden, our trucks weigh 16-tonnes, making the 18-tonne chassis ideal.”