By Reggie Jarrett
Editor, Jax Air News
First Coast Navy Fire and Emergency Services department has a new fire-fighting tool to respond to airfield emergencies aboard Naval Air Station (NAS) Jacksonville.
The department has acquired a Striker T-3000 Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting (ARFF) truck, also called a crash truck, to be used with an older crash truck it had since 2013.
The fire department received two of the $800,000 trucks, one for NAS Jacksonville and one for Naval Station Mayport, said Fire Chief Mark Brusoe. "It gives us enhanced movement on the airfield," he said.
"Combined with the other crash trucks we have, it enhances our capability quite a bit."
AARF trucks are used for airfield emergencies.
"We're here strictly for the airfield," said Station Chief Jeff Harrell.
"We handle any kind of emergency with an aircraft, whether it's a helicopter or a fixed wing aircraft."
The new crash truck doubles the water capacity of the older truck. "It carries 3,000 gallons versus 1,500 gallons," said Harrell.
"So we can put a lot more water on the fire." The truck's two water turrets can spray 1,750 gallons of water per minute on a fire and they are controlled by two joysticks in the cab. 
In addition to water, the truck carries 420 gallons of fire-fighting foam.
Increased water capacity is not the only advantage with the new crash truck. "The technology is making everything really simple," Harrell said. "It is very operator friendly. We call it fireman-proof." 
Each crash truck operates with a three-man crew. 
The department took possession of the new truck Jan. 10 and firefighters were given instruction on its operation and then took the truck on several practice runs. "It's awesome," said engineer Frank Knott, who drove the truck during the training session. "It's always nice to get a new piece of equipment."
The new AARF truck will be put into service later in the month after the firefighters have been fully trained on the vehicle.