ATFD opts for battery operated extrication tools

By David Fleet
Atlas Twp.-On Tuesday night the township board of trustees voted 4-0 for a battery operated extrication combination tool. Township Supervisor Shirley Kautman-Jones was absent with notice. The cost on the extrication tool is $9,295 purchased from Northville Mich. based R & R Truck Inc.
The extrication tools operate at about 10,000 psi in order to cut the stronger metal used in doorposts of some vehicles. The fire department will open doors or roofs of vehicles to make room for first responders to work around and remove a patient if necessary. The new tool uses Milwaukee batteries which can be charged from the fire truck at the scene.
Key in the new battery operated extrication tool is capability to be operated by a single firefighter, said Atlas Township Fire Chief Steve Bullen.
“During last (December 2021) month, there were six emergency runs where only one person showed up during the day (to make the run),” said Bullen, during the Jan. 18 township board of trustees meeting.
“We are trying to get something to be safe for us and the patient.”
Assistant Fire Chief Ed Klimek was on three of the six solo calls.
“If we arrive at an accident the current extrication tool requires hoses and time to get started,” said Klimek. “The battery operated tools allows the firefighter to get started right away and save a life. There are other tools, such as hydraulic rams and cutters that will operate on the same Milwaukee style batteries, so we’ll look for a grant to purchase more tools.”

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