Engine 21 pushed into service at Douglas Fire Station


Capital City Fire/Rescue Chief Rich Etheridge (foreground with back to camera) watches firefighters and Douglas residents prepare for the "push-in." (Photo by Matt Miller/KTOO)

Everyone gets a photo of Engine 21 after the push in. (Photo by Matt Miller/KTOO)

Like other new CCFR engines, a manually operated bell sits at the right front bumper of Engine 21. Stored in the front bumper are two of the latest in battery-operated Hurst tools, mechanical cutting vehicle extraction tools commonly known as the "Jaws of Life." (Photo by Matt Miller/KTOO)

Hose attachments for the new Engine 21 that will join a rescue-quick response vehicle and an ambulance at the Douglas Fire Station. (Photo by Matt Miller/KTOO)

The new Pierce brand engine can hold 700 gallons of water and can pump at least 1,500 gallons a minute. (Photo by Matt Miller/KTOO)

Tools commonly used by firefighters include an axe, halligan, and sledgehammer. (Photo by Matt Miller/KTOO)

Classic and brand new: A vintage hand-drawn hose cart that Douglas firefighters believe is at least a century old will occupy the Douglas Fire Station along with the new Engine 21. (Photo by Matt Miller/KTOO)

Self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA), air tanks, generators, fans, and other motorized tools fill the storage compartments. (Photo by Matt Miller/KTOO)

Ladders and hoses are kept covered in the new engines, but are still ready for use at a moments notice. (Photo by Matt Miller/KTOO)

The old KME brand Engine 21 will likely be stationed out at Auke Bay. (Photo by Matt Miller/KTOO)

Juneau and Douglas firefighters kept with a century-old tradition on Monday with a ceremonial push-in of the brand new Engine 21 at the Douglas Fire Station.

Capital City Fire/Rescue Chief Rich Etheridge said it’s been 28 years since Douglas had a new engine. The $641,500 apparatus was funded by regular contributions into the department’s 20-year fleet replacement savings fund. Money is withdrawn for a new engine when an older engine reaches its 20th year.

The brand new Pierce fire engine can hold 700 gallons of water and pump at least 1,500 gallons a minute. It’s identical to two newer engines at the downtown and airport fire stations.

The old KME model Engine 21 will replace another apparatus at the Auke Bay Station that will be moved to replace an older Seagraves model at the Lynn Canal Station.

The Seagraves engine will eventually be designated as surplus and may be handed over to a small Southeast Alaska fire department.

“Push-in” for new Engine 21 at the Douglas Fire Station on Aug. 11, 2014. The engine’s diesel motor was turned on so the brakes could be disengaged.

Etheridge said the push-in ceremony originated with horse-drawn fire engines. After a fire call, the horses would be unhitched from the engine and firefighters would push it back into the station.

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