New powerful fire engines plus smaller off-road wildland engines are coming into service in some of San Mateo County's most diverse and challenging regions.
These new engines are replacing older models, many that are beyond industry standards in terms of age and mileage.
"These new engines help us better perform our core mission: protecting our residents and protecting property," said Mark Steward, assistant chief of the San Mateo County Fire Department. "They are also going to reduce maintenance costs over the long term."
The engines are going into service as front-line protection against structure and forest fires and can provide assistance in the event of vehicle crashes, floods, mudslides, earthquakes and other emergencies. Additional vehicles are coming into service for in-the-field incident commanders, fire marshals and support staff.
The engines and support vehicles are purchased with funds from a local, countywide sales tax approved by voters in 2012 and extended in 2016 as Measure K. The Board of Supervisors created a County Fire Vehicle Replacement Fund in 2013 with Measure K proceeds after receiving a report that stated the average age of the County Fire fleet was 16 years with water tenders averaging 27 years.
“These Measure K investments ensure that San Mateo County remains a leader in public safety,” said Don Horsley, president of the Board of Supervisors. “Our residents should rest assured that firefighters have the latest tools they need to respond to all emergencies. These can be ranging from a mother calling 9-1-1 concerned about her baby to a report of a small fire where a quick response can prevent it from turning into a devastating wildfire.”
San Mateo County Fire firefighters and volunteer crews provide emergency first-responder services to residents and businesses across 165 square miles from south of Pescadero to San Bruno Mountain and Devil's Slide. They also provide mutual-aid support for cities across San Mateo County and beyond.
The County Fire Department consists of four stations -- located in Pescadero, Skylonda, Cordilleras (off of Edgewood Road between Alameda de las Pulgas and Interstate 280) and Tower Road in San Mateo -- all staffed by CAL FIRE personnel. County Fire also operates three stations -- located in La Honda, Loma Mar and Kings Mountain -- staffed by volunteers.
As of April 2017, four new full-size engines have replaced older engines. Two new wildlands are now in service along with four staff vehicles and a new water tender.
Firefighter Jason Haas behind the wheel of the new Engine 59, stationed in Pescadero. It replaces an engine that racked up 198,000 miles in 16 years' of service.
The control panel on Engine 57, based in La Honda and staffed by the volunteer La Honda Fire Brigade.
The cab of Engine 58, based in Skylonda, with a self-contained breathing apparatus in the foreground.
Donors provided $100,00 toward the cost of Engine 57.
Engine 18: Fire Station 18 (off of Edgewood Road between Alameda de las Pulgas and Interstate 280)
Cost: $618,000. Replaces 1998 engine with 175,000 miles.
Engine 57: Fire Station 57 (La Honda)
Cost: $451,605. Replaces 1988 engine with 27,000 miles.
(Note: La Honda Fire Brigade contributed an additional $100,000 toward the purchase.)
Engine 58: Fire Station 58 (Skylonda -- Skyline Boulevard near Woodwide Road)
Cost: $663,508. Replaces 1997 engine with 91,000 miles.
Engine 59: Fire Station 59 (Pescadero)
Cost: $663,508. Replaces 2001 engine with 198,000 miles.
Where are the engines stationed? Check out our map on the Measure K home page.
Communications and first-aid gear complement the picks, shovels and axes in Engine 659, based in Pescadero.
Wildlands engines such as Engine 659 are designed to speed small crews to fires and other emergencies on roads or in conditions where larger engines may have trouble maneuvering.
The new Engine 655 replaces a 1988 fire engine and a 1994 utility vehicle at the Loma Mar Volunteer Fire Company.
Engine 659: Fire Station 59 (Pescadero)
Cost: $187,910. Replaces 1994 rescue unit with 71,000 miles.
Engine 655: Fire Station 55 (Loma Mar)
Cost $164,405. Replaces 1988 engine and a 1994 utility vehicle.
Water Tender 56: Fire Station 56 (Kings Mountain Road)
Cost: $307,301. Replaces 1979 tender with 58,000 miles.
Command and Staff Vehicles
Chief officers are able to move anywhere rapidly and safely via vehicles that serve as mobile command posts. These vehicles come with a wide array of equipment used for communications, planning and incident management.
Fire Station 17 (San Mateo Highlands)
Battalion Chief Pickup Truck: Cost: $62,074. Replaces 2008 vehicle with 106,000 miles.
Battalion Chief Pickup Truck: Cost: $41,044. Replaces 2009 vehicle with 122,000 miles.
Prevention -- Deputy Fire Marshal Pickup Truck: Cost: $33,500. Replaces 1992 vehicle with 97,000 miles.
Training Captain Pickup Truck: Cost: $35,000. Replaces 1995 vehicle with 118,000 miles.
Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus: 60 Apparatus and 120 Air Tanks.
Cost: $436,000. Replaces 25-year-old equipment.
Learn more about how local Measure K funds are filling local needs at http://cmo.smcgov.org/measurek