Morrow Mayor J.B. Burke, City Manager Jeff Eady, Morrow Fire Chief Mark Herendeen and Deputy Chief and Fire Marshall Herb Jones joined a host of city firefighters plus guests from other Clayton municipal fire departments to welcome the newest addition to the Morrow fleet, its newly-arrived custom fire engine.
The state-of-the-art fire engine, complete with its 1,500-gallons-per-minute pump and a 500-gallon on-board water tank, was introduced as representing another milestone in the department’s continuing effort to provide the best fire fighting equipment and manpower to its citizens.
The party actually took on the appearance of a ship being christened as Burke joined Herendeen in breaking a bottle of champagne on the front of the engine.
In his opening remarks, Burke said the celebration was not so much to celebrate the new piece of equipment, but the city’s efforts to serve its citizens in a better, faster and more efficient manner.
“As your major, I am always working to provide what is best for this city and its citizens,” he said.
“I understand that our citizens needs come first and their safety is paramount and this custom fire pumper represents a success in continuing my goal to provide optimal service to our community,” Burke said.
The mayor added that Morrow’s fire department is “top notch” and their emergency response time is well below the national average.
“This means you have a reason to feel safe and confident about your choice to call Morrow your home,” Burke said.
Quoting Aristotle who said, “We are what we repeatedly do,” Burke said excellence in city government and its services “is a habit.”
“Here in Morrow we work to create habits of excellence like our fire department,” he said.
Herendeen said the new fire engine comes from a company which knows what it is doing in the fire protection and fire fighting business, especially as it has been in operation since the 1800s.
“This new engine is a great workhorse for us and should be around for a long time,” Herendeen said, adding the last new engine came to the department in 1998.
Although Herendeen said the new engine would not affect the city’s Insurance Service Office, or ISO rating, it will however take the place of an older Morrow fire engine, which will then go into a reserve status, something the Morrow Fire Department has never had.
“This is a key point for us,” Herendeen said. “Hopefully within the next few years, we can replace some of our other older engines but, to now have a reserve engine, means a lot to us.”
The new engine has the capacity to carry up to six firefighters, but the department usually has three on a truck when it responds to an emergency with two others in an accompanying ambulance.
“This truck is also environmentally friendly and represents the state-of-the-art in fire fighting,” Herendeen added.