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Clifford getting first new fire truck in 2 decades

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After more than six years of searching for funds, the town of Clifford has the money to purchase a new pumper truck for its volunteer fire department.

A $150,000 state grant will enable the small community located northeast of Columbus Municipal Airport to replace a truck that has been in service for 40 years, Clifford town board member Ed Stone said. The new truck is expected to arrive before the end of the year.

The town has agreed to provide matching funds of $37,537 required to receive the grant through the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs, according to a state news release.

“That means it’s going to be the town’s truck for a few years before it’s turned over to the department,” said Stone, who also serves as vice president of the Clifford Volunteer Fire Department.

The $187,537 purchase will be the first new vehicle bought for the Clifford Volunteer Fire Department since 1992, he said.

One advantage to the community is that the new pumper will be able to hold 1,200 gallons of water, compared to 750 gallons that can now be carried, Stone said.

A new truck also will be able to put out more water in a shorter amount of time, as well as provide safety features for firefighters the old truck cannot provide, Stone said.

Clifford is one of only five Indiana communities to receive funds from this grant cycle.

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