*Story by Captain Max Brown
Lt. Shane McCoy Master FF Mike Rose, and myself headed out for Appleton Wisconsin at about 4:15 a.m. this past Tuesday.
Our trek started with a car drive from El Dorado to Lawrence. It was there that we met up with Pierce fire truck Salesman Roger Brown (no relative to Max). Roger then transported us to the airport in Kansas City.
At around 11:00 the airplane in Kansas City took us to Milwaukee, Wisconsin. And, from there it was a two-hour ride to Appleton.
We were immediately taken to the main Pierce plant where we toured the factory until about 4:30 p.m. The tour was a little bit reversed from what we expected. It started with the final assembly area and worked back from there.
Day two we started at the main plant again. We went through some of the processes of what Pierce does ~ painting, installing wiring, cab and chassis assembly and more. Then, we went out and test drove as well as operated the ladder of a 100’ aerial platform.
After lunch we went to Pierce’s north plant in Appleton where we watched them put together the sections of aerial ladders and platforms, as well as seeing how the cabs were built. We also saw many ARF trucks (airport rescue firefighting) that they build for the military and airports across the country.
On July 24th we drove from Appleton to Kewanee to the fabrication plant. This is where they actually receive the steel and make the aerial ladders, platforms, torque boxes for the stabilizers, and paint them.
After touring that plant it was back to the main plant in Appleton to go over some of the truck cab styles, body and pump options, paint colors, and storage compartments.
On July 25th the day was spent looking again at the different options for the trucks and picking out what our group would like to see on our truck. Using this information the the representative put together a sample spec and gave a preliminary price if we were to choose specific options.
On July 26th it was time to head back home. We left Appleton at about 6:45 a.m. and arrived in El Dorado around 3:30 p.m. According to the all of us it was a very informative trip. It gave us a lot to consider no matter who we want to build the truck.
The Right Truck at The Right Price!