We are currently in the process of collecting bids on a new staff vehicle to replace the 1997 Expedition I am currently driving.  The vehicle I currently drive is in decent shape for being 14+years old.  It has 150k miles on it AND it is the previous chiefs "old" response vehicle.  It is an Eddie Bauer and I hate it.  But, it is provided by the citizens that I am sworn to protect and will drive it until my replacement arrives.


The question is,"what do we replace it with?"  Should we replace it with another SUV, large or small?  OR Do we replace it with a truck?


Right now, I am evaluating a crew cab F-250 with camper shell and slide out AND another Expedition.


Both vehicles are on gov't concession but the truck is more than $3k less.


The truck will provide a variety of services after its end of service life as a staff vehicle.  It can pull the safety trailer, mower trailer, haul materials for the Class A burn props, begin service as a brush truck OR become the new Battalion Chief command rig or snow plow.  The truck also requires the turnouts be stored in the bed, which is probably where contaminated gear belongs anyway.


The Expedition is more efficient with gasoline but the truck has a diesel option (7k upgrade).  The Expedition is more recognizable as an emergency vehicle and likewise, has more available emergency vehicle accessories available.  The Expedition is also more comfortable to drive, however, if that were the only factor, we would all drive Limited Edition leather wrapped sports cars. 


Therefore, I am seeking the opinion of others to assist in the selection between the two OR if you have an idea, post it.  What do your chiefs/staff members drive?  It has to be 4WD for our terrain, call load and unpredictable weather.  Post your pics if you got any.


I also wonder why we are so hesitant to change from the norm of sedans and SUV's, which only provide a limited scope of service.  Or am I just crazy?




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Our chief wouldn't have a pickup or a SUV. Most of all our chiefs, Assit and Deputy chiefs have had cars since the dept started. Anytime they used a anything like a pickup, suv or van was when they ran chief battalion officer or one of the cars were in the shop so they use the station's pickup as a response unit.
Having the car, the chief stores his gear in the trunk. The station pickup is a crew cab but the gear ends up in the backseat because it has no cap.
The suv and the van were provided by the county and moved from station in the battalion. So the gear ended up in inside the back.

The standard you are referring to is NFPA 1851. This covers the storage, handling and care for the fire fighting ensemble. Chapter 9.1.6 states that you cannot have used gear stored in the passenger compartment of any vehicle or living quarters, unless it is enclosed in a case or bag.

However, I think Chapter 8 says it cannot be stored in a vapor tight container.

How about a crown vic.
You can get some great deals on used ones from highway patrol.
Just look on the classifieds on ebay, tons of ex feds vehicles you can buy from different dealers.
I appreciate all of the great comments, suggestions and questions. Today, we ordered a crew cab super duty truck, which is scheduled to be delivered in 12-14 weeks. It is well under budget allowing for us to maximize our lighting, equipment and safety options. When the project is completed, I will post pictures for all to enjoy. We are going to transition to purchasing vehicles that provide more versatility then just carrying personnel to and from emergency scenes. We are also entertaining a model for dynamic deployment. These types of vehicles are going to be considered.

Again, thanks for the feedback and be safe out there.

One of our local depts bought their chief's vehicle and a local big name nursery and landscaping company paid for the lights for the vehicle. The company got their name on the bottom of the door as the donater for the lights. Plenty of LEDs on that vehicle front, back and sides.

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