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.

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“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.