A hose is just a hose for most firefighters. But with ALTRA 3D, my team was very impressed at how it could make their job easier. My guys said, “Yeah, we really like it, and it’s easy to work with.”
When a Hose Is Not Just a Hose
The Clavet Volunteer Fire Department serves Clavet, a small town located near Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. A team of volunteer and professional firefighters of different age groups provide critical support to the community during emergencies.
At the helm of the fire department is Mike Beamish. He is currently the department’s fire chief, firefighter, and sales representative of fire products.
Moving from working as an electronics designer to firefighting, he stepped into a role that had been part of his family history, following in his father’s footsteps, who had been a firefighter for 29 years.
Discovering NIEDNER: A game-changer for the Clavet Volunteer Fire Department
Fire Chief, Firefighter, and Sales Representative of Fire Products
Mike became Clavet’s fire chief nearly four years ago. His encounter with NIEDNER was a turning point. “I hadn’t heard of NIEDNER before my time at a distributor for fire products,” he recalls. His discovery of NIEDNER’s ALTRA 3D hose at a trade show gave him pause as to the potential next-generation fire hoses could have on his team.
“Our team never used to be picky on fire hoses. When we needed new ones, we only based our criteria on availability and price,” he says. “At the time, a hose was just a hose.”
“However, we were facing significant delays and dealing with hose quality issues,” he explains. Mike says delivery timelines could span 20-24 months or more. “If it was more than a calendar year, it didn’t fit in our budget as we buy small quantities per year because of our small community,” he mentions.
Although the fire department was very cost-conscious, the low quality of many hoses was becoming a serious concern. “It’s great to have a low price, but we destroyed our hoses quickly. We wanted more quality.”
That’s when he decided to test the ALTRA 3D.
Testing NIEDNER hoses with the Clavet team reveals untapped possibilities
“Bringing the ALTRA 3D back to my crew for testing was when we really saw its potential,” Mike says, emphasizing the importance of practical, hands-on experience in evaluating firefighting equipment.
Describing the ALTRA 3D hose, Mike’s enthusiasm is evidently clear. “The flexibility, the maneuverability, the light weight, how it folds and gets back on the truck…It’s just nice to work with,” he says. This hose wasn’t just another tool but a game-changer in how his firefighters approached their job.
“As I said before, a hose is just a hose for most firefighters. But with ALTRA 3D, my team was very impressed at how it could make their job easier. My guys said, “Yeah, we really like it, and it’s easy to work with.”
The team noticed many other advantages of the ALTRA 3D hose. Mike indicates that the fire department has 2 primary engines, using 150-200 feet of hose for the supply lines and 150-200 feet of hose for the attack lines. When testing for the supply line, the ALTRA 3D hose was extremely durable as the team dragged it through the pavement. The ALTRA 3D was very reliable and easy to use for the attack line. “We didn’t notice any water hammer effect, and the hose did not kink at all,” Mike says.
A desire for better durability and reliability drove the decision to switch to NIEDNER. “When I can get more for less money, it’s an easy decision,” Mike states.
How Clavet leveraged NIEDNER’s customer service
Mike points to NIEDNER’s willingness to address the fire department’s needs, even if they ordered a small number of hoses each year.
“Color is important for my guys. Ten years ago, we decided all lines should be a different color to track the lines easily—and to know what goes where. Even our nozzles match the hose color. It’s foolproof. Because most firefighters are volunteers, we try to make it as simple for them as possible. “When we asked about different colors for the hoses, they came back to us quickly and delivered. That kind of support is invaluable,” he remarks.
The impact of ALTRA 3D hoses on the Clavet Volunteer Fire Department
The ALTRA 3D hoses have made a significant impact on the department’s operations. “It’s made our work easier, more efficient. We’re saving on our budget since we don’t need to buy hoses as often,” Mike observes. He also highlights the hose’s versatility:
“We use one attack line for everything—house fires, wildfires, car fires. It’s adaptable and fits all of our needs. The same applies to our supply line. It’s just a great price for the quality.”
The ALTRA 3D is also suitable for volunteer firefighters of all ages and physiques, making it easy to use across the board. Because the hose is so reliable and durable, the fire department was actually able to save on costs. “As a fire chief, the ALTRA 3D checked all the boxes. It says what it will do and does it.”
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