Grand Bay-Westfield firefighters ‘push new fire engine into service

The Grand Bay-Westfield Volunteer Fire-Rescue Department continued a time-honoured tradition this week as it welcomed a new engine.

Council approved the $817,742.50 purchase of a new fire truck that carries 1,200 gallons of water in June.

“Town of Grand Bay-Westfield Council recognizes the service and dedication of the Fire-Rescue Department,” said Mayor Brittany Merrifield.

“This new fire truck supports Council’s commitment to organizational capacity by providing firefighters the necessary tools and equipment, to help ensure the safety of the community.”

Merrifield joined the department and other members of council on Monday for a traditional “Push-In.”

According to the town, the tradition’s history dates back to the 17th century, when hand-drawn fire engines needed to be hand pushed into stations after every call.

In the 18th century, the horse-drawn steam engines still could not be backed into stations, requiring firefighters to disconnect the animals and again push in the engine.

While motorized fire trucks don’t need to be pushed-in, the tradition has persisted as a way to celebrate a new addition to the fleet.

“The Fire-Rescue Department is proud to be equipped with this new Engine which will help us protect the community for many years,” said Troy Gautreau, chief of the Grand Bay-Westfield Volunteer Fire-Rescue Department.

“The Engine will also provide added safety for our firefighters, and enhance the Department’s ability to extinguish fires efficiently.”

The department’s fleet now consists of nine vehicles, including three engines, one tanker, one rescue vehicle, three command units and one rescue trailer with an off-road rescue vehicle.

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