Fremont, Nebraska, March 21, 2019 —
As the flood waters rose in Nebraska, equipment provided by DLA Disposition Services was used to rescue people from the flood waters.
The military services turn excess equipment, including trucks, over to DLA Disposition Services. Some of that equipment only requires modification to be transformed in to firefighting apparatus. The U.S. Forest Service runs a firefighter equipment program that allocates some of those excess vehicles out across the country.
Currently, first responders who are using the equipment from DLA Disposition Services are still dealing with flood waters and not available for interviews, but what we do know is that equipment provided through DLA Disposition Services is making a difference.
“DLA Disposition Services has the equipment and the U.S. Forest Service works with the Nebraska Forest Service to make equipment available where and when it is needed to help local fire departments protect people and our natural resources. It’s a great partnership for the taxpayers,” said Melissa Frey, manager of the Forest Service’s National Federal Excess Personal Property Program & Firefighter Property Program.
Trucks that once hauled troops, fuel and food are converted into firefighting apparatus. Water tanks are added along with pumps and spray nozzles. The trucks are then given a new coat of paint to match the apparatus used where they’re headed to. Then they are ready for new crews and new missions.
Carol Fix is part of the team that oversees the reutilization program for DLA Disposition Services. She explained that Nebraska entered the firefighter program when it started in 2006. Since then firefighters in the state have acquired more than $89 million worth of equipment.
The high ground clearance of ex-military trucks adds to their value when the water’s five feet high and rising. Some missions reported in Nebraska mirrored the work by DLA provided trucks in hurricanes in recent years. Former Army trucks hauled medical people to work at medical centers in Nebraska just as trucks did in Texas. People have been evacuated and others rescued thanks to the partnership between DLA, the Forest Service and state and local governments.