Monday, April 28, 2008

You Just Know It's A KME...





It was Friday, everything pointed to a good day, last daylight, good training scheduled a good crew. Then it hit us, we were working on a KME and everything else was worn out and should have been crushed years ago.

Coming in Captain 4 passed along that the truck was leaking transmission fluid before he departed for home and that someone would be in to take a look at it. In the mean time the Wagon is told to strip the rig and put the reserve squad in service that there wagon had to go to Guardian. In comes Bill to check our truck, the next thing I know he says come take a look at this. You know when you find the leaf springs hanging it is going to be a bad day. With the pin gone the springs dropped and rubbed a transmission line causing a leak. So off the truck goes to Stanley Springs, yeah you guessed it they don't have the pin in stock so it is down for the weekend only to come back who knows when.

We load up all our equipment on a 1975 CF Mack engine that should have been removed from service 20 years ago. Now we are the rope rescue company, we also carry water rescue equipment along with the truck company tools and everything else that needs transferred. With the use of big hammers we were able to pound everything into the compartments and jump seats. Good thing we were only a two man rig. While this is going on the Wagon puts a 1987 Sutphen in service. The uptown should have felt very safe, the two rigs had a combined age of 54 years. To make matters worse they were the two busiest rigs the city had seen, catching more fire than I can even imagine.

Now it comes time to check the rig after being informed that the Mack didn't want to start in the morning. Wow is a gauge supposed to read that much discharge. Off to training, so far so good, until it comes time to leave and the rig won't start, some playing around and I get it to fire. But then the runs start, lights on siren whaling, get out of the way cars I am coming through. I didn't know the needle could go that far into discharge when hitting a siren. Once on the scene park out of the way, turn everything off and crank the hand throttle out until it reaches the charging area. With each run things got worse, now the siren is starting to sound like you are standing on a cows udders and the radio is making funny noises when the button is stepped on.

I get the rig to 1500 hours when they decide to bring Tower 3 up to replace it and transfer the engine to station 6. I figure lets move it out of the way so the truck can go into my bay. No luck it finally died. Luckily the Wagon was going to pick up their rig or we would be out of rigs and have to put a company out of service. We finally figure out how to hook up the jumper cables to the multiple batteries and jump the rig.

Thank God it was Friday and time to go home to a drink or two or three or, well you get the point. Surprisingly it was a fun day, I guess it pays to have the mentality of a twelve year old.

5 comments:

Sparky said...

Mondays and Fridays, you just have to love them. I have had many Friday shifts like that, and they want to know why firefighters drink.....

Haney said...

I know what a cow sounds like when you tip it, but just what does one sound like when you step on it's udders?

Chuck said...

Sounds like fun! Just because something is getting up there in years is now reason to put it out to pasture or you would have been out there a long time ago!

I bet had that Mack been properly maintained and serviced it would pump better than most newer rigs.

Bradley Myers said...

Sparky, I thought we drank because we were married and worked for Chief's.

Haney, when you step on a cows udders it sounds like the Mack did when you stepped on the siren button with little juice in the system.

Chuck, Chuck, Chuck, I am not old , I am seasoned. Some would say I am just starting to ripen. I know Brian would after the shakes last tour. You are the one that wants to destroy the unborns home by blowing them away. At least this rig is old, worn out and no longer reproducing.

Wagon Master In Training said...

Brad, atleast your reserve fleet is worthwhile. Call me the next time that you are in town doing a photo chut. I have a form for you to fill out to come down and hangout on the Hill.