Fire Department to dedicate new ladder truck Saturday

The Bellevue Fire Department will dedicate a new ladder truck Saturday, giving it another tool to fight fires and other emergencies downtown.

Equipped with a telescoping ladder that facilitates firefighting on tall buildings, the ladder truck is being transferred from Station 7 at Wilburton. The truck, which only had a partial crew at the other station, will have a full crew with the number of firefighters at Station 1 going from seven to 11.

The addition of the ladder company was made possible after the City Council last year approved hiring eight new firefighters. The council's action was in response to the rapid growth the city has experienced in the central downtown business area and the emerging public safety needs there. The council also approved six new police officer positions.

The ladder truck crew will specialize in firefighting and rescue emergencies. However, the cross-trained firefighters also can respond on medical calls.

Local officials will speak at the brief ceremony. Refreshments and a cake-cutting will follow the ceremony.

The dedication and ribbon-cutting is set for 11 a.m. at the station, 766 Bellevue Way S.E.