Sheldon, Iowa — Sheldon is now the home of a Mobile Tactical Equipment Trailer, which is owned by the state of Iowa, and is designed and equipped to help train firefighters in this part of Iowa.
Sheldon Assistant Fire Chief Scott Meineke tells us about the trailer and its function.
(As above) “It’s a twenty four foot enclosed trailer. It’s owned by the Fire Service Training Bureau, which is a division of the State Fire Marshal’s Office. It’s the skills trailer, it can be used for other emergency response as well, but its primary function is the skills trailer for training of firefighters.”
Meineke says it’s equipped with all the equipment needed for firefighter training and certification.
(As above) “Not all departments have all the equipment (and) materials to complete all the skills required to obtain national certification. So this trailer is actually a big piece, it’s actually a mobile fire truck and fire station on wheels, that allows all the departments to have all the materials and equipment necessary to complete all the skills required for certification.”
He says the Sheldon Fire Department was chosen as the host department for this region of the state.
(As above) “We’re the host department for this trailer. So what we do is we maintain the inventory of the equipment, and make sure that the trailer is ready to go. It’s not our expense to take care of any of that, that would be transferred back state of Iowa, we just make sure it’s always ready to go.”
Meineke says the trailer is available for use by fire departments in the northwest Iowa district.
(As above) “(Any) department that’s hosting a firefighter one or two course can call us, (and) we will coordinate the delivery of that trailer to them, so then they can use it while they’re hosting their classes and take all the equipment materials necessary for the training out of the trailer, rather than having to take those materials out of service from their trucks, so they’re always available for an emergency response themselves.”
Northwest Iowa is just one region that is home to one of these Tactical Equipment Units, and Meineke tells us how the Sheldon Fire Company came to host it.
(As above) “We’re one of the regions that, of course they do the train through, so they were looking for a place that was willing to store it out for them. Northwest Iowa Community College didn’t have any area to store it where they were at, at this time, so we volunteered to store it at our training facility that we have at the old waste water treatment plant.”
He says that, not only is the trailer used for training, but it can also be used to supplement the emergency equipment of area fire departments in the event of a major incident.