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      Ottumwa Fire Department looking to buy a new truck

      The Ottumwa Fire Department is in the market for a new truck.

      The department is looking to replace an American Lafrance truck that has been on the fleet since 1977. The truck has a 85-foot reach and does not have a pump or carry water. For that reason, it's rarely used and the department says it's high time it's replaced.

      "This new fire truck will be a 95 or 100 foot aerial, will be operated daily, it'll carry a pump and water, so it'll be a fire truck and an aerial," said Deputy Fire Chief Cory Benge. "So you'll see it in town running normal fire calls, fire alarms, that type of thing."

      Benge said the department has had a committee working on research and design for over a year, figuring out which parts and manufacturer will produce the best truck for the OFD.

      At Tuesday evening's meeting, the Ottumwa City Council set a public hearing regarding a new truck for July 16. On that night, the department will go over bid speculations with the council and hopefully come to an agreement over which bids should be sent out.

      The $1 million truck would be paid for by city bonds and Benge said if all goes to plan, the new truck should be here and operating by July 1, 2014.