Crossville firefighters are fighting fires better with a ladder truck they’ve had for two years.
The truck has a 107-foot ladder with a camera at the top, which allows a better aerial view of the fire. Deputy Fire Chief Chris South said this feature allows firefighters to remotely control the water nozzle.
“It sets up and deploys much quicker,” South said. “All of the technology has changed. It has auto leveling and all sorts of nice technology tools that allow us to be a little more effective in what we do.”
Crossville officials pointed to several recent fires during a council meeting Tuesday. City manager Greg Wood said the ladder truck is paying off.
The older 75 foot ladder truck has been with the department since 1994. South said with the old truck a firefighter had to work at the top of the ladder to control the hose.
“If you got someone up in the top of the ladder, the smoke is obviously affecting them and they’re having to wear a pack to protect themselves,” South said. “[The newer truck] provides an obvious advantage.”
Other technological advantages the newer ladder truck has includes 360 degree cameras around the vehicle. South said this allows the driver a better view of the road before making a lane change. There are also rear view and blinker cameras. A seat belt safety feature is also included.
The Crossville Fire Department has used the new ladder truck since 2018. South said the department keeps the older truck in reserve.