Stock vehicles usually come equipped to carry out the basic duties they were designed for. Usage outside model design often requires some modification. While there isn’t a West Coast Customs, a GAS or an Xzibit to ‘pimp this ride’ there is instead an able-bodied team of mechanics at the National Fire Service who have labored diligently to transform this K27 delivery truck into a mini firefighting machine. To them customizing the K27 is no different from us here at Love FM souping up our mobile to broadcast remotely. Training officer, Kenneth Mortis, fills us in.
Kenneth Mortis; Training officer, National Fire Service



“Behind me here you have a newly purchased Kia, what we would want to call a fire truck. This truck was purchased through the Government of Belize for the fiscal year 2008/2009 at a rough figure of BZ$39,000. The frame is being customized by our mechanics because it will be housing fire fighting equipment such as hoses, branches a portable pump and so on. In the cab we have some breathing apparatus, what we call the oxygen tank. The primary purpose is to replace an old one that needs to be exchanged for a newer one.”

Unlike the average fire engine there is no water tank attached to this vehicle. Mortis tells us how this contraption of theirs works.

Kenneth Mortis; Training officer, National Fire Service

“The job of that portable pump is to allow the truck to reverse into the nearest open source that we have so the crew can connect some suction hoses to the pump. Water is drafted through the pump and then discharged through the delivery hose. After that fire fighting will commence at a fire scene.”

If you’re wondering whether there is enough hose length to suck in water from one end of Caye Caulker widthwise to quell a four alarm blaze then you’d be surprised to know how long these hoses actually extend.

Kenneth Mortis; Training officer, National Fire Service

“They are 100 feet in length and a quarter inch in diameter and we have the smaller sizes which is one and three quarter inch. We call those the attack lines. We have a branch pipe that discharges from a minimum of 90 liters of water per minute.”

Along with large scale development on the little island of Caye Caulker comes the peril of infernos.

Kenneth Mortis; Training officer, National Fire Service

“Presently Caye Caulker has on truck like this; it is in a dilapidated state so we are replacing it. We do have more than one pump in the event that a fire of mass meningitides arises. We are trying to equip our fire stations countrywide in the event that they need to put out a large fire.”

The newly pimped fire truck will be shipped to Caye Caulker tomorrow morning.