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The following article is from the Laramie Boomerang.

Albany County Fire District No. 1 recently purchased a used fire engine to support the newly formed Central Fire Department, and WyoTech advanced diesel students will help make sure it runs well.

The fire district purchased the truck and equipment from the city of Laramie less than a month ago, ACFD No. 1 Board of Directors member Jon Essley said. With the truck, the new fire department will be able to respond to fires just outside the Laramie city limits.

Essley said it didn’t take much effort for the fire district and WyoTech to form a partnership. The fire district would save money on inspection and maintenance while the school could continue to show off its students while providing a volunteering opportunity for their students.

"The students have done maintenance on other fire trucks before, but this one is the biggest," Essley said.

The partnership provides advance diesel students at WyoTech with experience working on first responder vehicles, Essley said. Working on the truck also provided students with community service opportunities, which the school prides itself with how much volunteering their students participate in.

"WyoTech students often volunteer their time to the community performing community service projects," Essley said "WyoTech has been on the President’s Honor Roll for Outstanding Community Service for eight consecutive years."

Having the engine inspected will help the newly formed Central Fire Department lower its Insurance Standards Organization rating and give some county residents a chance to reduce their fire insurance rates, Essley said. To be eligible for the lower rate, residents must live within 5 road miles of a recognized fire station.

Advanced diesel students Cody Bohannon and Jeremy Swethik spent 10 hours between the two of them working on the engine making sure everything is in working order. Bohannon said the truck was dirty but is otherwise just like other vehicles he has worked on before.

"The boys checked out every single light bulb," WyoTech diesel instructor and City Councilor Bryan Shuster said.

The engine is expected to have a life span of 20 — 30 years in service, meaning the district should get several years of service out of it, Essley said. The new engine will also allow the fire district to use its older engine to assist with fighting federal fires, in addition to local fires.

A downside to the partnership is there are only certain times during the school year when the students are able to work on the engine, Essley said. The gap when students can work on outside vehicles is meant to take place after classes and trainings about the type of vehicle are completed, which leaves them with few opportunities every year.

"There’s about two opportunities every three months, after training," Essley said

All Albany County volunteer firefighters donate time to working local floods and highway accidents, along with fighting fires. Volunteer positions are currently available for residents of Albany County at the Central Fire Department and all outlying Albany County fire departments. Those interested in volunteering can email albanyaountyfd1@hotmail.com for free training, Essley said.

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