Trap VFD upgrades aging fleet

Published 9:21 am Tuesday, December 1, 2009

TRAP – By blinking, one will miss the small community of Trap, located on NC 42 between Powellsville and Colerain.

But, as they say, good things come in small packages.

On Tuesday of last week, members of the Trap Volunteer Fire Department experienced the fruits of their labor as this small department located in an equally small community now has the same modern firefighting equipment found in larger locales.

After a long and well-devised planning process, the Trap fireman landed a grant and low interest loan from USDA Rural Development in order to secure a new pumper/tanker that will better serve the community. Earlier this year, the Trap firemen received a $30,000 grant from the North Carolina Department of Insurance.

Even though the Trap firemen are skilled in technique, they were forced to serve their friends, neighbors and even total strangers with an aging fleet of vehicles.

Thanks to a $56,000 loan and $94,000 in grants, the Trap VFD was able to purchase a new truck, one that replaces a 1961 model that recently failed to meet NFPA/OSPM pump pressure standards.

The new vehicle is a 300 horsepower diesel model with a 1,000 gallon tank, twice the capacity of its old truck. It is capable of pumping 1,250 gallons per minute and also features a Newton valve quick dump system.

The good news embedded within all these “numbers” possessed by the new truck is the fact that those residing within the Trap VFD service area will see the department gain a better rating, thus leading to lower homeowners’ insurance premiums.

The new truck, manufactured by E-One, was delivered by Fire Connections of Rocky Mount. Trey Daughtridge, representing Fire Connections, presented the Trap firemen with a framed plaque containing photos of their new truck as well as the signatures of those who worked on the vehicle.

The funding was provided through the USDA Rural Development’s Community Facilities program, which helps build or improve essential community facilities for public use in rural areas where the population does not exceed 20,000. Eligible applicants include federally recognized Indian tribes, government or non-profit organizations. Examples of loan purposes include health care facilities, nursing homes, daycare centers, public safety facilities and equipment, community buildings and educational facilities.

Through this program, USDA ensures that such facilities are available to all rural residents.

According to USDA Rural Development representative Susan Christensen, who attended last week’s delivery of the new truck, the mission of the organization she serves is to increase economic opportunity and improve the quality of life for rural residents. Rural Development fosters growth in home ownership, finances business development and supports the creation of critical community and technology infrastructure.

Additional information on such programs is available through the USDA Rural Development office in Greenville (252-752-2035, ext. 4) or by visiting

The Greenville office serves Beaufort, Bertie, Camden, Chowan, Currituck, Dare, Gates, Hertford, Hyde, Martin, Northampton, Pasquotank, Perquimans, Pitt, Tyrell and Washington counties.