The City of Seaside, Oregon, has historically been well-visited thanks to its oceanfront location just 80 miles from Portland. Seaside Fire & Rescue serves the city of Seaside, the surrounding rural fire protection district and provides mutual aid for Gearhart, Cannon Beach, and Hamlet fire departments. Since the department was created in 1904, it has remained a very active, nearly all-volunteer department.
The diverse coastal and wooded terrain of Seaside can be especially challenging as fire and rescue volunteers patrol and respond to emergencies on the beach, unmaintained trails, parks and downtown. So in 2015, Seaside Fire & Rescue reached out directly to Polaris and purchased a Polaris Ranger 6×6 utility vehicle to complement their existing fleet of lifeguard, and rescue vehicles.
“We decided to purchase direct from Polaris because they make the process smooth and easy,” said David Rankin, division chief of operations for Seaside Fire & Rescue. “We told the government sales group what we needed our vehicle to do and they completed the order and upfit to our exact specifications.”
The Polaris Ranger 6×6 for Seaside Fire & Rescue has seating for two and is equipped with two radios, rear extended rack to hold a variety of rescue equipment including marine rescue cans, a surf rescue board and essential medical gear. The extended bed not only allows injured patients to be transported on a full-size spine board, it also allows the firefighters to transport firefighting equipment when needed.
“The seamless procurement process allowed us to put it to work immediately and in its first week of being in service, we used our Ranger to access a remote area to assist a neighboring fire department with a house fire on a lake that did not have traditional access,” said Rankin. “We were able to cut our way into the original access road used to build the house that allowed the larger trucks to come down and fight the fire.”
The quicker response saved more of the house and prevented the surrounding forest from catching fire.
“We keep finding new uses for our Ranger — we also use it on the beach. It was able to transport injured people to the awaiting ambulances,” added Rankin. “It’s been so capable and useful that we’re planning to purchase additional Rangers as replacements for our older lifeguard trucks.”
Polaris Government & Defense sales team member Tony Stanley hears a lot of similar feedback from customers. “Once a crew buys one Ranger, we often have follow-on orders for several more. As their truck fleets age, they buy Rangers instead because they are lighter, more maneuverable, versatile and easier to use. Plus they are easier and cheaper to maintain.”
The City of Seaside also hosts several community events and use the Ranger to help with each one, including festivals, races and parades. “In the city during our busy weekends it worked nicely to get around when our other rigs were tied up in traffic.”
“We’re also looking at collaborating with our public works department by adding the Glacier Pro Plow system to use these Rangers in the winter since it is much more cost-effective than a regular vehicle,” said Rankin. By making any additional accessories purchases direct through Polaris government sales again, Seaside Fire & Rescue will receive the same discount and free, direct shipping as they did with the original vehicle purchase.
Polaris Government & Defense can provide customers with turn-key vehicles — complete with emergency lights, sirens and other accessories – under one contract. Polaris also offers complete life cycle support of the vehicle, from delivery through post-sales service and warranty, service parts, additional accessories and onsite training, including mechanic and operator courses.