Twin Lakes Fire Department has new breathing equipment, UTV

The Twin Lakes Fire Department has acquired some new equipment recently.

New self-contained breathing apparatus are going out with firefighters on calls. The equipment was purchased with a $75,000 donation from an anonymous donor in honor of John Kjallander, with the village government kicking in another $20,000, said Chief Stan Clause Jr.

“The donation meant a lot to the department,” Clause said. “The donation we received was just amazing.”

The new equipment replaces units that were over 20 years old, Clause said. The department purchased 22 units, completely overhauling the department’s air packs.

The new equipment represents an upgrade in function as well as age, Clause said. They are Interspiro units, a Wisconsin company with a location in Pleasant Prairie. Some other local departments have been moving to Interspiro too.

“It’s nice to have the same system so they can be interchangeable,” Clause said.

The department also recently acquired a new UTV. The new Polaris Ranger has tracks instead of wheels and will be able to access terrain that is difficult for wheeled vehicles such as snowmobile trails and swampy areas, Clause said. Few other nearby departments have such a vehicle and the TLFD UTV can aid other departments when needed.

The department got a good deal on the UTV thanks to negotiating with Polaris by department member Glenn Tietz, who works at Twin Lakes Marine, Clause explained. The department was able to sell its old UTV to another fire department, meaning the new machine cost the department only net $3,000.

The UTV will be outfitted with a water tank and pump for fighting fires and be able to carry a backboard for patients, Clause said. Recent fundraising by the Twin Lakes Area Chamber & Business Association’ pond hockey tournament raffle will go toward those improvements along with other fundraising.

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