Fire trucks are equipped with essential equipment to help firefighters perform their jobs effectively. They usually include ladders like a ground ladder and an aerial ladder, hoses, a water tank and an onboard pump. They also feature a fixed deluge gun commonly referred to as a master stream that is used to spray a heavy volume of water over an area. Most of these vehicles are derived from commercial vehicle chassis that have been further upgraded and customised for firefighting purposes.
The term fire truck is often used generically to refer to any vehicle utilised by the fire department but they are usually classified and labelled according to their function and features. In general, fire trucks are used to transport firefighters and their supplementary equipment from the fire station to the site of the fire. These vehicles are also equipped with emergency vehicle lighting, sirens and communications equipment to allow them to communicate with one another in case they need to coordinate their actions.
Ladder trucks are a type of fire truck that were developed in the first half of the twentieth century to address the growing need for ways to reach taller structures such as buildings. These ladders were originally manually extendable but later on, they were replaced with the current kind of turntable ladders that are mechanically extendable. These ladders can be raised to a height of 100 feet and they are usually used to evacuate people from upper floor windows.
These types of fire trucks are often used in urban areas and they can be seen on roads almost anywhere. Aside from ladders, they are usually equipped with ground equipment like Hurst tools and ground-based hoses that can be used to put out small fires that may occur inside houses. In order to provide protection against chemical and other toxic substances, these fire trucks are equipped with mobile hazardous materials units that can mitigate hazardous chemicals as well as effect technical rescues.
Fire departments based in rural areas usually use a different kind of fire truck called a brush fire engine. These fire trucks are equipped with specialised hoses that can deal with wildfires which are more common in these parts of the country. These trucks are able to go on rough terrains in order to get to the fire quickly.
Lastly, there are also airport crash fire trucks which are a special kind of fire truck that are specifically designed to deal with accidents at airports. These trucks are capable of evacuating injured people as well as clearing aircraft that have been damaged in an accident.
Fire trucks are used in many cities and communities and their functions vary depending on the needs of the fire departments that operate them. Some of them are equipped with specialised hoses for dealing with hazardous chemicals while others are equipped with specialized equipment that can be used in technical rescue operations. For example, some fire trucks are equipped with equipment that can assist victims trapped in elevators while others are able to handle large wildfires.