Generous donations bring home AFD’s much-needed Water Tender 8258

BACK HOME The turgid truck tucked in at the inconsistently-staffed Downtown Arcata Station. Arcata Fire image

Arcata Fire District

ARCATA – Thanks to five incredibly generous and anonymous community members, Arcata Fire District’s Water Tender 8258 returned home from the Sacramento area after receiving much-needed repairs. AFD’s water tender has been out of service due to mechanical issues since late August.  

Unfortunately, it was during that time that the district also had several large fires in the rural, non-hydrant, areas of Arcata, requiring the district to bring in a water source. In the absence of its own water tender, Arcata Fire utilized the resources of neighboring agencies who were able to respond with their apparatus and assist with putting out the fires.

Whether related or not, following those incidents, Arcata Fire District began receiving donation checks specifically directed at fixing the broken water tender. These donations were so generous that it only took five of them to get the apparatus completely repaired, including some unexpected issues discovered while it was under repair.

“There is really no way to thank these incredible donors,” Fire Chief Justin McDonald stated. “The water tender is such a crucial tool in our apparatus repertoire that, regardless of the cost, it had to be repaired. These donations allowed the district to get those repairs done a great deal faster and to top it off, at no expense to the tax payers or impact to our operating budget.”  

The budget, which is operationally strained at this time, has forced the district into another attempt at a funding measure on the November ballot.  

“If the public passes Measure F, it will allow the district to repair and replace other much needed apparatus, as well as hiring for the eight frozen firefighter positions to staff that apparatus,” McDonald said. “That would allow us to re-open the third station that has been rotationally closed since the failure of our last funding measure attempt.”

Arcata Fire District would sincerely like to thank those five big-hearted community members for helping to keep the district operating more fluidly and remind the citizen of the district voting in November to email or call to learn the facts about Measure F.


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