Those responding to the scene of an accident can't afford to second guess their equipment or city hall. Now Grand Island firefighters get a boost in both respects with what they say is much needed new equipment.
A few years ago they barely had enough ambulances to handle all the calls they were receiving, so a new ambulance continues the trend of beefing up their fleet.
A 2012 Chevy truck provides the frame for the new ambulance, which cost $125,000.
It was approved in last year's budget, but wasn't purchased until recently. The delay was a sore spot with members of the fire union which is the same group that had sued the city over the lack of a new fire chief.
While firefighters didn't specifically address those concerns, the new fire chief says this shows the city's committed to public safety.
Chief Cory Schmidt said, "The city's got our back on that and this is a prime example, along with the addition of a rescue pumper, should be here shortly. We're going to be getting to 100 percent again. It's great."
Paramedic / Firefighter Jared Stockwell checked out the new ambulance on Wednesday. He said it will be a more reliable truck to use and he thanked the city council for their approval.
"Not just the sense of being able to get to the scene quicker but a sense of ownership, pride, having a vehicle that works, looks nice with the rest of the fleet we have. There's something to be said for that as well," he said.
While they've bought ambulances, Grand Island hasn't added a fire truck in a dozen years.
The new heavy rescue pumper is coming soon, with a price tag of around a half-million dollars.
Mayor Jay Vavricek and City Administrator Mary Lou Brown stopped by Fire Station 1 to see the new gear.
Vavricek approved the $700,000 in purchases this summer. In July he said, "The need is there, the dollars have been set aside, and it's time to replenish equipment so emergency responders can continue to take care of the people to take care of the people."