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Council to discuss new ambulance purchase

The Warren City Council will meet in special session next week to discuss the purchase of a new ambulance.

The meeting is set for Monday at 5 p.m.

Fire Chief Dave Krogler said the ambulance the city is currently reviewing costs $224,000.

Operations and Training Officer Steve Hoffman said the ambulance that would be replaced has been out for repairs for two weeks and is a 2008 model.

Krogler said the normal life of an ambulance is eight to 10 years.

A compounding factor, he said, is that the aged ambulance is diesel and diesel mechanics are becoming harder to find.

It marks a shifting industry standard from gasoline to diesel and now back to gasoline.

While council will be asked to make a decision next week, wait times for new ambulances could push upwards of a year.

City Manager Nancy Freenock told the council on Monday that there is $200,000 in an equipment fund generated by oil and gas extraction revenues from city lands. She said the city could also pursue a federal grant program through the U.S. Department of Agriculture for a portion of the funding.

The city has been successful with program for replacement of vehicles both in the police and public works departments. Hoffman said the city was awarded a grant back in August for power stretchers and the proposed new ambulance would come with an auto-load system.

“That’s a safety issue,” he said.

The current ambulance is expected back from repairs soon but the cost for those repairs is not yet clear. Hoffman said a repair bill a couple years ago for the ambulance totaled $6,000.

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