South Monterey County Fire Protection District board members (from left) David Nicolson and Larry Santos and board president Jon Conatser stand before the two new fire engines that will serve Pine Canyon and San Ardo. (Sean Roney/Staff)

PINE CANYON — South Monterey County Fire Protection District introduced two new fire engines to its roster during a board meeting Oct. 22 at the Pine Canyon fire station.

The district, which has served South Monterey County since 1976, covers Arroyo Seco, San Ardo, Pine Canyon and Lockwood.

The two new Type 1 2020 Smeal fire engines have 2,000-gallon pumps and can carry six firefighters. One will be stationed at Pine Canyon while the other will be in San Ardo.

Board president Jon Conatser said the district will reorganize their firehouses with the addition of the two new engines, with some of the older engines able to be placed in reserve. He said the two cost less than $1 million to obtain.

“They’re going to be equipped with wild land equipment and extraction equipment,” said Jason Luckenbach, battalion chief. “They have deck guns for any type of warehouse fire or pallet yard fire, anything that comes up.”

The two trucks were numbered 44 and 31, with Engine 44 planned to go to San Ardo and Engine 31 planned to remain in Pine Canyon as a frontline engine.

Conatser noted the need for personnel more than equipment.

“We’re actively needing more volunteers,” he said, adding that the organization used to have plentiful membership. “Across the district, we have 25 to 30 volunteers and we could use more, just to support the community.”

Those interested in volunteering can go to the King City CalFire Fire Station at 743 Reich St., or call that station at 831-385-6437.

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Sean Roney is a freelance reporter for King City Rustler and Salinas Valley Tribune, a unified publication of Greenfield News, Soledad Bee and Gonzales Tribune. He covers general news for the Salinas Valley communities in South Monterey County.


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