April 20

How Much Does a Fire Truck Cost?

Last Updated on June 20, 2022

How much does a fire truck cost? The answer will depend largely on chassis length and the options on it. 

Common body length options for fire trucks include 9-foot, 10-foot, 12-foot, 14- foot, 16-foot, 18-foot, 20-foot, and more than 20-foot. Trucks with a body length of up to 15 feet are usually classified as a light rescue chassis. Trucks with a body length of up to 20 feet are usually classified as a commercial chassis. Any body length greater than 20 feet is considered a custom chassis. 

The term “fire truck” actually means more than people realize. They’re more than just what fire departments use. The phrase actually applies to a whole range of different truck types including: ladder trucks, fire engines, rescue vehicles, bush trucks, and command vehicles. 

Types of Fire Trucks

Types of fire trucks infographic

Ladder Truck 

A ladder truck comes equipped with a lot of ladders. Some have side-mounted leaning ladders. Others have a rotating telescopic ladder that stems from the top of the truck. These fire trucks are built on either a commercial or custom chassis. 

Fire Engine 

A fire engine is also known as a pumper truck. It comes equipped with a water tank, pump, and hoses. These are built on a commercial chassis. 

Rescue Vehicle

Rescue vehicles come equipped with a lot of storage for carrying health and safety equipment, such as masks, first aid equipment, a winch, a hydraulic extrication rescue tool (jaws of life), and more. They are built on either a light rescue or commercial chassis.

Brush Truck

A brush truck is a fire truck equipped for traversing rough terrain, and comes equipped with a small water tank and other common firefighting tools. It’s built on a light rescue chassis. 

Command Car

A command car is driven by the fire chief and comes equipped with very little equipment. It could be built on a light rescue chassis or be a simple passenger car or truck. 

New Fire Truck Pricing

Here are prices for the five trucks listed above.

The largest fire trucks on the market in the US can easily exceed more than $1,000,000.

Fire Truck Cost infographic

There is great variance between the top and bottom ends of a truck, and that’s because there are a lot of options and equipment that contribute to an extreme price difference. Some of these options include:

  • Body length: 9-20+ feet 
  • Drivetrain: 2WD or 4WD 
  • Cab type: two-door standard or four-door crew
  • Body type: Spitfire, Super Squad, Quick Attack/Urban Interface, Walk-Around Rescue, Crew-Forward Rescue, Water Rescue
  • Compartment door style: roll-up doors or slam-shut doors 

Other features are…

adjustable shelvingDualock drawer setsscene commander cranepressurized storage system
roll-out traysemergency lightingwater rescue boat storagepermanent mount winch
slide-out tool boardtelescopic scene lightingwater rescue boat motor storageportable winch with side mount receivers
backboard storagelight towerGeneratorsafety back-up camera
airbag storagerear traffic advisorReelscustom paint job

A fire department explains fire truck costs

The Lewiston Fire Department located in the state of Maine purchased a new heavy-duty quint truck (which combines a ladder truck and a fire engine). They explained to local media why the truck cost so much.  

The department’s Engine 3 is a Pierce Ascendant with a 107-vertical-reach aerial ladder, which can reach farther than their previous truck with its 75-foot ladder. The increased length, coupled with its ability to hold two firefighters instead of one, and faster deployment ending in a smooth stop adds to an increased cost. 

The department also doubled the number of ground ladder feet on the truck to 188. 

The truck features a 470-gallon water tank, 1,200 feet of four-inch line (hose) to supply the truck with water from a source, and 30 gallons of Husky 3 foam. The water spray rate was also increased from 1,000 gallons of water per minute to 1,500 gallons of water per minute. It also features 1000 feet of “attack line”—hoses used to spray water onto fires. 

EMS Vehicles Currently at Online Auction

A better suspension on the truck allows for smoother rides, which translates into faster speeds. And the machine can operate better on a grade, which is handy, since grades and uneven terrain affect tip loads when extending the aerial ladder.

Engine 3 is stacked with features end-to-end to help crews handle structure fires, car crashes, water rescues and all other emergencies likely to arise within the city. Multiple compartments on the truck are dedicated to specific types of emergencies. Inside the compartments are hand tools, sand, foam pads, forced entry equipment, and first aid.

The truck’s Enforcer cab offers more cab space and seats six. It’s also more maneuverable in tight areas and challenging situations.

The final price of the truck (in 2019) was $974,998.

Finding a Fire Truck Today

These large and helpful vehicles we know as fire trucks aren’t only owned and operated by fire departments. Ordinary people can buy them too. If you’re wondering where on Earth you’d be able to find one, well, you’re in luck.

Municibid’s expansive online catalog includes vehicles ranging from everyday cars, to ambulances, and yes, fire trucks. Secure one for yourself today!


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