Houston Fire Department

Fleet and Facilities Purchases and Improvements

Fleet and Facilities Purchases and Improvements

In the last three years the Houston Fire Department has invested in 18 new trucks at an approximately cost of $500,000 each and five aerial (ladder) trucks at an approximately $1 million each.

In the last two years 30% of EMS units, totaling 30 units, have been replaced or upgraded at a cost of $160,000 each.  Total cost: approximately $4.8 million.

The four-year fleet replacement plan calls for an expenditure of $30 million, replacing 12% of the fleet per year.  The average vehicle life expectancy ranges from 7 to 10 years.

Accomplishments:   Engine/Aerial Unit

  • 18 Replacement Spartan Engine trucks were equipped with independent front suspension, supplemental restraint systems, backup cameras, Anti-lock brakes, automatic traction control, hearing protection/communication systems for all occupants in the cab.
  • 2 Replacement Spartan 105’ Aerial trucks were equipped with independent front suspension, supplemental restraint system, backup cameras, anti-lock brakes, automatic traction control, hearing protection / communication systems for all occupants in the cab
  • 1- Quint truck, 2- Aerial trucks, 1- Tower trucks anticipated delivery in calendar year 2019.

EMS Units

  • 24 replacement ambulances placed in service in 2019 YTD.  These are the first HFD vehicles compliant with the nationally recognized CAAS Ground Vehicle Standard for Ambulances, representing the latest safety standards.
  • 5 additional replacement ambulances have been funded and scheduled for procurement in FY 2020.
  • 4 Ambulance Remounts completed in 2019.

Support and Specialty Units, added in 2018 and 2019 and deployed in Imelda response

  • 9- High Water Evacuation Vehicles
  • 10- 4x4 Crew Cab F250 Emergency/Rescue Support Units
  • 10- Double Stacked Evacuation Boats and trailers
  • 3- Rescue Boats designed for swift water operations
  • 1- Inmar Rescue Boat designed for search and rescue operations
  • 6- wave-runners
  • 7- Crew Cab F250 Incident Command Vehicles used by District Chief command officers.
  • 3 drones placed into service for aerial surveillance.

Strategic Needs:

  • NFPA Annual Engine Pump Tests program
  • Replacement of 23 Engine fire trucks older than 10yrs of service
  • Replacement of 11 Aerial ladder trucks older than 10yrs of service
  • Replacement of 28 Ambulance Units older than 8yrs of service
  • Replacement of 13 Light Duty Supervisor Units

Additional Equipment

Accomplishments:   Firefighting Equipment

  • Ballistic Vests: The HFD has purchased and deployed ballistic vests and first aid kits for each staffed position in Emergency Operations.   The equipment is intended to be deployed when responding to violent incidents such as active-shooter, civil unrest and other volatile responses.
  • SCBA Deployment: Deployed next-generation Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus units to the Emergency Operations division.  This equipment, purchased through the FEMA AFG grant and City of Houston funding, significantly improves respiratory protection levels for firefighters working in hazardous environments.
  • Rapid Intervention Team (RIT) Pack: RIT Pack III issued to all District Chiefs’ cars provides equipment standardization across the department. Standardization of RIT Packs is crucial to safe and efficient emergency deployment.
  • Exit Locators: With assistance from City Funds from Councilmember Knox’s office, the HFD embarked on a department-wide Exit Locator Unit upgrade. This equipment will be assigned to each District Chief and Safety Officer truck. The equipment is designed to provide a visual and auditory signal of egress location for firefighters who may become disoriented inside a structure.
  • Small Equipment Funding: To ensure rapid response to fire house needs, Mayor Turner approved a budgetary line item to repair and replace fire station appliances, small engine and lawn equipment and other light-duty firefighting equipment.
  • Thermal Imaging Cameras: In progress for wholesale replacement of 105 department thermal imaging devices to assist in search and rescue.

Radios Upgraded in 2018 and 2019

  • Department-wide Motorola APX 6000 Radio
  • Department-wide Motorola XE RSM Lapel Microphones
  • Department-wide SCOTT Epic 2 RDI – Bluetooth Microphone

Facilities

Accomplishments:   Cancer Prevention Initiatives:
Plymovent Systems:
To limit firefighter exposure from vehicle exhaust in the stations, an aggressive effort to retrofit each fire station with the Plymovent Vehicle Exhaust Removal system was implemented this year.  Installation has been completed in 15 fire stations at a cost of approximately $70,000 per station.  As part of a $2.7 million Assistance to Firefighters Grant awarded for facility upgrades and training, a $1.5 million grant allocation and $235,000 City grant match approved by Council will be used for the installation of the Plymovent System in an additional 30 fire stations in FY20.

PPE Extractors:
To limit exposure from contaminated Personal Protection Equipment worn by our firefighters, the HFD has embarked on an aggressive initiative to install advanced cleaning commercial Extractors in each of the city’s 94 fire stations and Arson Division.  HFD purchased 56 extractors through both private funding and council district service funding (CDSF) from Council Member Stardig’s and Council Member Travis’ office. HFD has received the first 20 Extractors and installation is in progress. The remaining 36 Extractors are in production and, upon delivery, will be installed in fire stations throughout the city in FY20.

Station Ice Makers: 
To limit exposure and contamination of ice consumed by firefighters at the fire stations, crews are relocating ice machines away from the fire apparatus floor to a protected area within each station. Of the 39 stations requiring ice machine relocation, 19 have been completed. Funding for the remaining 20 has been identified through General Services Division and is slated to be completed in FY20.

Fire Station Renovations and Repairs:

  • Remediation Fire Station 65: Mold remediation complete. Build-back is underway.
  • Mold in Fire Station 17 was remediated; air testing underway.
  • Mold in Fire Station 60 was remediated.
  • Renovation Fire Station 43: Renovation in progress. Estimated date of completion is November 2019.
  • Renovation Fire Station 101:  Fire Station 101 remediation and build-back has been completed after the station incurred flood damage during the May 3rd storm.
  • Roof Replacement Station 102: Complete roof repair work slated to be completed in FY20.
  • Construction Fire Station 55: New construction of Station 55 is in progress. Estimated completion is October 2019.
  • HVAC Service Requests: General Services Division addressed a combined total of 1,843 Fire Station HVAC service requests throughout 95 facilities in 2018 and 2019.
  • Roof Service Requests: General Services Division addressed a combined total of 213 Fire Station roof service requests throughout 52 facilities in 2018 and 2019.
  • Plumbing Requests:  General Services Division addressed a combined total of 1,735 Fire Station plumbing service requests throughout 95 facilities in 2018 and 2019.