LAFD electric fire truck

The uptick in EV adoption seemingly isn’t limited to the consumer market — around the world, we are also seeing the adoption of battery-powered alternatives for commercial purposes, including mail delivery, police departments, and now, fire departments. The Los Angeles City Fire Department (LAFD) has officially deployed what is believed to be the first all-electric fire truck in North America.

The electrified truck was created by Rosenbauer, an Austrian-based fire engine manufacturer whose claim to fame is building the “world’s first fully electric drive fully truck,” the Rosenbauer RTX. In 2019, the company brought a prototype of the truck to fire departments across North America, which caught the attention of The Menlo Park Fire District and the LAFD.

Moving ahead of Menlo Park, LAFD positioned itself first in line for the electric fire engine, placing an order for a custom configured model that cost US$1.2 million. The truck, which is equipped with a 360 kW electric powertrain and a 132 kWh battery pack good for two hours of operation, starts at US$900,000.

Just this weekend, the LAFD officially debuted the fire engine alongside the rest of its fleet. Speaking to the new vehicle, City of Los Angeles Fire Chief Kristin Crowley was incredibly optimistic. “It will reduce noise, and bring it basically to nothing in regards to diesel emissions,” she said. “We will actually create the space for our firefighters to be healthier around our fire engines.”

Of course, the electric truck also comes with all the usual features for this type of vehicle, including a hose that reaches up to 1,000′ 5″, and another reaching 1,000′ 2.5″, and an adjustable air suspension that can provide between 7″ and 19″ of ground clearance. The electric fire truck also holds between 500 and 750 gallons in its water tank depending on its configuration, and its pump has a capacity of 750 to 1,500 GPM.

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