The New Hope Volunteer Fire Department was one of three to recently receive new trucks. Pictured are, from left to right, John Bourrage, Alfred Love, Michael Ted Evans (trainer), Rodriquez Gully, Dept. Chief Randy Gully, and Donnie Hickman.
The New Hope Volunteer Fire Department was one of three to recently receive new trucks. Pictured are, from left to right, John Bourrage, Alfred Love, Michael Ted Evans (trainer), Rodriquez Gully, Dept. Chief Randy Gully, and Donnie Hickman.
By Austin Bishop

Kemper County Messenger



When three new fire trucks rolled into DeKalb earlier this month, Kemper County Emergency Management executive director Ben Dudley said it gave each of the county's nine volunteer fire departments "a fairly new frontline pumper."

The three new trucks, which were assigned to the Kemper Springs, New Hope and Preston Volunteer Fire Departments, cost a combined $731,435, with $210K of that expected to be refunded to the county through the Rural Fire Truck Acquisition Assistance Program.

"All three of the trucks were the same, with some top-of-the-line equipment," Dudley said. They were purchased from Sunbelt Fire Apparatus. The trucks have 1,000 gallon water tanks.

A training session was held at the DeKalb VFD, where the trucks were delivered, on Jan. 5. The event was conducted by Michael Ted Evans.

"There are some features that are on this truck that wasn't on some of the older ones and we wanted the firefighters to become familiar with them," Dudley said. He said at present that all three of the trucks were in service and one had already responded to a house fire.

The trucks will be paid for on a 10-year note through the Mississippi Development Authority. The trucks were purchased through the Kemper County Board of Supervisors.

Dudley said that currently the DeKalb VFD has a 7 fire rating, the Preston/Mount Salem district has an 8, Scooba a 9 and the rest are at 10s.

"That is something we are continually working to improve," Dudley said.