Scorpion will help save lives

Above: Water and foam projected from the Scorpion HRET can reach distances of up to 90 metres

Macclesfield firefighters have a new weapon in their armoury that will be ‘invaluable for challenging incidents’ and saving lives.

The Scorpion High Reach Extending Turret (HRET) is replacing a fire engine and an aerial ladder platform at Macclesfield Fire Station.

Built by Emergency One, it is a fire engine that has the ability to deliver water and foam from height, which is crucial when dealing with building fires and fires in industrial yards.

Macclesfield’s Station Manager Lloyd Blower said: “The Scorpion HRET adds a new dimension to our operational response.

“The turret will help us to fight certain fires quicker and easier due to the places it can reach, access and deliver water.

“It is Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service’s first HRET Scorpion and was delivered to Macclesfield Fire Station on Friday 24 September.”

The Scorpion’s High Reach Extendable Turret rotates 360 degrees and can reach up to 20 metres vertically and 14m horizontally.

The HRET can project water or foam via its boom-mounted monitor at a rate of up to 6,000 litres per minute.

Water and foam delivered by the high powered HRET can reach distances up to 90 metres.

There are CCTV and thermal imaging cameras at the end of the boom, and the Scorpion HRET also boasts a piercing tool which can penetrate the tiled or metal covered roofs of buildings.

This enables the Scorpion HRET to deliver water into a building without having to endanger firefighters.

From left, Crew Manager Paul Watterson, firefighter Stuart McKeith, Assistant Chief Fire Officer Paul Binyon, firefighter Matt Barton, Chair of the Cheshire Fire Authority Cllr Bob Rudd, firefighter Lawrence Stanley and Crew Manager Ian Moore with the Scorpion HRET at a Macclesfield training day

Neil Griffiths, Head of Service Delivery at Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service, said: “It’s fantastic to see how technology is improving our operational response to fighting fires, especially as we face the challenges of modern methods of building construction.

“As well as performing like a regular fire engine, the addition of the Scorpion HRET to our fleet will provide other options for Incident Commanders to consider when dealing with challenging incidents.

“It is so important that we utilise the very best 21st century innovation to help protect our communities and keep our crews as safe as possible.”

Cllr Bob Rudd, Chair of the Cheshire Fire Authority, said: “The replacement of the aerial appliance and a fire engine at Macclesfield Fire Station is one of the key elements in the 2020-24 Integrated Risk Management Plan (IRMP).

“With its functionality that combines a traditional fire engine with the capability to apply water from height, the HRET will replace the current fire engine and aerial appliance, which are at the end of their serviceable life.

“Cheshire Fire Authority endorses the Service’s IRMPs and we were pleased to have approved the 2020-24 plan which invests in our future and provides Cheshire with the first class fire and rescue service it deserves.”

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