The fire truck performs all of the functions not directly related to extinguishing the fire, but necessary to the firefighting operations. This might include, search and rescue, ventilation (clearing smoke and gas from the building), salvage and providing access to the roof with ladders. The 100-foot aerial ladder is carried on a tillered trailer that is steered from the rear cab. The tiller design allows for better maneuverability through city and residential streets. Trucks also carry many different lengths of ground ladders so a ladder of the proper length is always available.
The aerial ladder has a built-in waterway, allowing firefighters to direct an elevated water stream of up to 1,250 GPM (gallons per minute) from the end of the ladder, high above the fire. Because the truck does not have a pump or water tank, an engine must supply the waterway.
The compartments along the side of the truck carry specialized tools to perform the different support functions needed for safety and efficiency at a fire. This equipment includes axes, chainsaws, crowbars, rubbish hooks, ropes and pike poles. Powerful hydraulic spreading and cutting equipment is carried to extricate patients trapped in a vehicle at a traffic collision or in a rescue operation. There also is special equipment to monitor for hazardous materials and electrical hazards.
In areas where the department does not staff a truck, a rescue engine is equipped to perform the same functions minus the aerial ladder and assortment of ground ladders.
Staffing: The truck is staffed by: a Fire Captain in charge of the crew, a Fire Engineer who drives the truck and operates the aerial ladder and two Firefighters.
Truck + station number.
i.e.: Truck 41.