Three Marion and Polk County local fire service agencies will receive a type three fire engine as a part of the Oregon State Fire Marshal awards for its $25 million Engine Program. Across the state, 76 local fire service agencies were selected to receive a new type 3, type 6, or water tender to boost firefighting capacity.
Local fire agencies were eligible to apply. A selection committee comprised of members from the Oregon Fire Chiefs Association, Oregon Volunteer Firefighters Association, and Oregon State Fire Fighters Council reviewed applications.
Applicants were selected based on four principles:
- Assuring statewide distribution and allocation based on local initial attack, regional mutual aid, and conflagration needs.
- Necessary infrastructure to maintain and protect the apparatus long term.
- Recent apparatus awards from the legislature and other legislative funding sources such as wildland-urban interface and omnibus legislation.
- The capacity to staff newly awarded apparatus.
The three fire agencies in Marion and Polk Counties are the Marion County Fire District 1, Sublimity Fire District, and SW Polk Co Rural Fire Protection District.
“This investment in the Oregon fire service is critical as the state modernizes equipment and increases firefighting capacity to respond to incidents in our communities,” Oregon State Fire Marshal Mariana Ruiz-Temple said. “Over the last three decades, more communities have been impacted by wildfire. This investment is a major step forward in achieving our mission to protect people, property, and the environment from fire and hazardous materials.”
The OSFM relies on the Oregon Fire Mutual Aid System (OFMAS) when responding to wildfires or other disasters that could impact communities. More than 300 local fire service agencies make up the system across Oregon. These firefighters and equipment are mobilized under the Emergency Conflagration Act, pre-positioning, or immediate response assignments. OFMAS is used when a fire or disaster exceeds the local fire service agency’s capacity.
The OSFM Engine Program is a part of the agency’s Response Ready Oregon initiative, launched in 2021. The initiative is part of a multi-pronged approach to prepare, prevent, and respond to wildfires. The goal of Response Ready Oregon is to attack fires while they are small and keep them away from communities.
Award recipients will enter into a contract with the OSFM to support OFMAS mobilizations, boosting local, regional, and state response. This investment into the Oregon fire service will bring more resources, and the right resources, to a stretched system.
In January 2023, contracts were awarded to Rosenbauer to build the water tenders and type 3 engines. Skeeter was awarded the contract to build the type 6 engines. The OSFM anticipates deliveries to begin in 2023 through the first two quarters of 2024.
The OSFM Engine Program funding was made possible through Senate Bill 762, Oregon’s wildfire omnibus bill passed in 2021.
A list of recipients can be found here: OSFM Engine Program.