BROOKVILLE — The Brookville Volunteer Fire Company said goodbye to its ladder truck April 5 as it prepared for the arrival of a new ladder truck in about one week.

Firefighters from the Summit Volunteer Fire Department in Summit, Ark., saw the online advertisement for the ladder truck and contacted Brookville VFC to purchase the truck.

Several members of the Summit VFD began a 14.5 hour trip from their home in Marion County, Ark., to Jefferson County. They left at 6 p.m. and arrived in Brookville around 9:30 a.m.

Summit VFD Lt. Jerry Darr said they hit nasty roads in Ohio but the roads were mostly clear by the time they crossed over into Pennsylvania.

Once the paperwork was signed and they had a crash course on how to operate the ladder truck, they headed straight back to Summit, to return to work on Monday.

Darr said they hoped to be back home by 2 or 3 a.m. if “all goes well.”

Darr said the puchase of the ladder truck was to help the department reduce its ISO rating as well as to help out neighboring fire departments. He noted that they assisted several fire departments.

This was Darr’s first visit to Pennsylvania, as well as Ohio. He said he liked what he had seen of the area. Summit has about 600 residents, he said, so it is much smaller than the Borough of Brookville. Despite being a small community, the fire department has three tankers, three engines, a pump truck and a brush truck.

The Summit VFD provides assistance to several other fire departments in the area as Marion County has 11 fire departments and fire stations, according to Darr says the Summit firefighters follow the FILO concept when fighting a fire whether in their territory or not. FILO stands for First In, Last Out. He says they don’t stop until it’s done and often stay to help neighboring companies to roll up their hoses once a fire has been extinquished. The other companies, he says with a smile, “like hearing us respond.”

The Arkansas firefighters were not leaving with just a ladder truck, however. Both the Brookville and Reynoldsville fire companies donated extra equipment as well. Reynoldsville donated air packs, a saw and hose and Brookville donated air packs, hose and turnout gear.

Following the gathering at the fire station, members of both Summit and Brookville fire companies took the ladder truck to the Brookville Area High School to give the new owners a crash course in how to operate it before they headed back to Arkansas.

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