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Middletown donating retired fire engine to Caribbean nation to replace pickup truck

This 1997 Luverne fire engine that has been retired by the Middletown Division of Fire will be donated to the Caribbean island nation of St. Vincent and the Grenadines to help improve their firefighting services. CONTRIBUTED/CITY OF MIDDLETOWN
This 1997 Luverne fire engine that has been retired by the Middletown Division of Fire will be donated to the Caribbean island nation of St. Vincent and the Grenadines to help improve their firefighting services. CONTRIBUTED/CITY OF MIDDLETOWN

The Middletown Division of Fire will be donating an old fire engine recently taken out of service to a Caribbean island nation during a presentation today with a representative of that nation.

Middletown City Council on Tuesday approved the donation of a 1997 Luverne fire engine that was taken out of front line status in 2009 and out of reserve status in July when the city received two new fire engines.

Howie Prince, consulate general of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, is scheduled to accept the fire engine from the city during a ceremony this morning.

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Middletown Fire Chief Paul Lolli said the island nation does not have any modern fire apparatus, and its current fire engine is a pickup truck with a small water tank in the truck bed.

“We are pleased to be able to extend the life of this fire engine, giving St. Vincent and the Grenadines an improved way to fight fires in the future,” Lolli said.

The Division of Fire has made other donations of old firefighting gear and breathing equipment on several occasions in the past to the Dominican Republic and other nations’ firefighting and police services. This was equipment and gear that no longer met National Fire Protection Association standards and therefore could not be used in the United States, officials said.