The US Army has awarded a contract to Pierce Manufacturing, an Oshkosh Corporation company, to provide 51 pumper rescue vehicles for use in Afghanistan.

The Pierce pumper is a firefighting rescue vehicle, which uses a compressed-air foam system (CAFS) for quick firefighting response over the rugged and arid terrain of Afghanistan.

The pumper rescue vehicle is a custom-engineered Ford F-550 crew cab with an integrated 550gal water / foam tank and 500gal-a-minute pump.

The vehicle uses a 4×4 chassis with a two-speed transfer case and heavy-duty suspension components, and can ford water 16in deep and maintain a speed of 65mph on a level highway.

The vehicles are primarily designed to operate on paved roads, but can operate on unpaved roads and also, to a limited extent, off road.

Oshkosh Corporation executive vice president Wilson Jones said that the vehicles are
ideally suited to remote locales where an abundant water supply is not available.

“They are reliable, simple to operate and carry a full complement of tools and equipment,” Jones said.

This order from the US Army is an addition to a recent production of 136 mini-pumper and pumper rescue vehicles by Pierce. The delivery of vehicles is scheduled to begin in early 2010.