Fire department to bring gas meter calibration in-house

By Melissa Martin

June 4 trustees meeting

Hinckley Trustees approved more than $12,000 in purchases for the fire department, starting with the $5,847 purchase of a new deck gun, including a portable monitor and tips, to outfit the new tanker the department took possession of in May.

According to Assistant Fire Chief Shawn Barrett, the equipment – which consists of a vehicle-mounted nozzle through which flows a large volume of water – will be purchased through Johnson’s Fire Equipment Company. The purchase will also include portable nozzle unit that can be attached to a hose and positioned at the scene of a fire when needed.

“It supplies a large amount of water, and the tips go with it,” Barrett said. “You use different-sized tips to get a different amount of water.”

Also included in the list of expenses is a gas meter calibration kit, not to exceed $1,500, which will be purchased from Fire Safety Services.

Barret explained that the department has three various-sized gas meters at the station, which it uses for natural gas calls. The calibration kit, he said, will allow the department to perform the calibration of those meters in house.

“Previously, we sent the meters out to different companies, such as Columbia Gas,” he said. “It’s time consuming, not to mention that we have to send someone to go sit with the monitors. … This will be beneficial for us, especially since we have multiple meters and not just one.”

Barret also noted that the department will once again utilize the Wadsworth-based Yoder Graphics to detail the department’s new tanker at a cost not to exceed $5,000. He explained that to have the graphics, including the department’s name, installed on the truck at the manufacturer would have cost approximately $8,000.

“Even the salesperson recommended getting it done locally because it would be cheaper to do than at the factory,” he said, noting that the department utilized the services of Yoder Graphics previously to outfit the department’s UTV and one of its ambulances.

In other news, Barrett informed trustees that the fire department has formed a committee to help design the ambulance it plans to purchase later this year. More than anything else, he said the department needs to make sure there is enough compartment space for three individuals to store their turnout gear during runs.

“Bouncing back and forth between an ambulance and a fire engine, we want to make sure they have all their gear with them at all times,” he said.

Barrett said the company has received four estimates for the cost of a new ambulance, which start at $330,000. Trustees are expected to decide on the purchase in the coming weeks.

Currently, Barrett said, the time between ordering an ambulance and receiving it is approximately three years.

Trustees are also in the process of deciding whether to replace the township sign at corner of Ridge Road and state Route 303 with an updated, electronic sign.

Trustee Monique Ascherl said the township is exploring a 4-foot by 6-foot sign or a 5-foot by 6-foot sign. To date, the township has received one bid for the sign, which includes the cost of removing the existing sign, excavation, installation and building of masonry, for $32,000. Trustees said they plan to obtain another quote from a different contractor before moving forward with the project.

The board is also exploring the possibility of maintaining a township Facebook page as another means of reporting township news, events and more.

Trustees said that if the page is approved, commenting on the site will be turned off and the page will be used only as “a way to get factual information out to residents in a timely manner.”

Ascherl said she spoke with representatives at the Medina County Prosecutor’s Office who advised that maintaining a Facebook page for that purpose is permitted as long as the township follows its records retention policies.

“If we reach another 1,500 to 2,000 residents, that’s a good thing; that’s impactful,” Ascherl said.

Trustee Cyntia Engelman echoed Ascherl’s sentiments, noting that she also believes having a Facebook page would be beneficial for township residents.

“Any mechanism we can use to push out information is beneficial,” she said. “I think if we can advance information more quickly, that’s helpful.”

Ascherl said trustees would decide at a later date whether to move forward with the idea. ∞