CRAIGSVILLE, Va -- One fire engine at the Craigsville Fire Department is 31-years-old. The engine runs fine, but it does have one very dangerous feature.
Because some volunteers have to sit outside while the truck makes its way to a stop, they are at risk if something happens to go wrong. Also, there are levels of discomfort if it is raining or the middle of winter.
It was time to buy a new truck.
“Everybody's excited, especially you know, because it is a newer truck. It is actually enclosed cab. We no longer will be getting wet. It will be warm in the winter time, cool in the summer,” said Capt. Jason Byram with the Craigsville Fire Department.
All week long, the volunteers have been going door to door raising money to pay for their new, custom made, $409,000 fire engine.
“We need to get every dollar that we can get,” said Chief Wayne Martin. “We decided to go back to door to door. We go to each person's house and ask for a donation. It's a volunteer deal. They can give whatever they please. We've had very good luck so far.”
Good luck in an area where only about 500 homes exist means a grand total of maybe $5,000. The station has been denied grants twice from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. That means the majority of the money for the truck will be coming from the county.
“If we could have got the grant, we would have been in great shape because that money you don't have to pay back. The money we got from the county, we have to pay back $30,000 a year, I think, for the next 10 years,” said Martin.
It is a large price to pay, but both volunteers and the people of Craigsville will benefit from the new engine.
“It will better serve the people we have to deal with.”
At last count, $59,000 still needs to be raised to pay off the new truck.
The Craigsville Fire Department will also be holding a steak dinner on Saturday help to cover costs. Their door to door efforts end on Friday.
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