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Friday, May 6, 2016

Testing to insure safety

Thursday, July 9, 2009

The plume of water shoots across the lake as members of the Cherokee Village Fire Department perform pressure tests. Photo/Tammy Curtis
Maintaining equipment and practicing proper safety to ensure they can serve the area if needed is the primary concern of the Cherokee Village Fire Department. Firemen Kelly Ford, Curt Wiggins, Donnie Sellars and Jason Griffin with the Cherokee Village Fire Department were at Lake Cherokee June 17 conducting pump tests on one of their trucks.

Ford explained that in these required tests, various pumps on the truck are tested at different pressures to ensure they are working properly and can effectively put out a fire if the need arises. The truck being tested was the last of the department's vehicles to be tested. Wiggins said the others had all passed the tests.

The test is conducted by pulling water from the lake by a large hose and storing it on the fire truck, and then putting the water out at various pressures set forth by the requirements. These pressures are read with a gauge and the findings are recorded.

Cherokee Village Fire Department Fireman Kelly Ford, Curt Wiggins, Donnie Sellars and Jason Griffin preparing for pressure testing on one of their trucks at Lake Cherokee June 23. Photo/Tammy Curtis
The plume of water cascading over the lake from the pressure test could only be witnessed for a brief moment as the oldest of the department's trucks failed the first test. Wiggins said, "That is why we do these tests." The truck being tested was the department's reserve truck and Ford explained that it has been in service since 1972.

The fireman said that the truck needed a bearing replaced before repeating the test. Ford explained that the men do their own mechanic work, saving the city money on repair bills. The repair was made later in the week and the truck passed the test.

When asked why the department utilized the lake for the testing, Ford said that the tests require a good intake source for the water to obtain a good reading on the high pressure testing.

The tests are conducted yearly on all fire trucks.

The Cherokee Village Fire Department currently has four stations, their main station at Baseheart, Omaha, Waketa and Onaga.

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