Schumer Helps Johnstown Fire Unveil Brand New Ladder Truck

May 17th, 2010

The city of Johnstown gets a brand new fire truck, one that was desperately needed after a massive fire two years ago. The fire happened in April of 2008, starting on West State Street and eventually destroying much of a city block. While there were no fatalities because of that fire, the fire department says the new ladder truck will help them keep residents safer.

New Hire

A new hire, Jeffrey M. Palcovic, is currently enrolled in the 62nd Recruit Fire Fighter Training (RFFT) program at the New York State Academy of Fire Science in Montour Falls. The program began on July 24th and is scheduled to complete at graduation on Thursday, October 6th. The RFFT class is 11 weeks long and includes more than 450 hours of intense training which meets the provisions of the New York State training standard for career probationary and non-permanent firefighters. Graduates of the program receive New York State firefighter certification and also receive national fire service professional qualifications standards certification for Firefighter I, Firefighter II and Hazardous Materials Operations.

Jeffrey is filling the vacancy recently created by retiring fire fighter Kevin Hale. Kevin served with the department since his hire on July 21st, 1990, for 21 years and was the senior most firefighter in the department at his retirement.


During the aftermath of Hurricane Irene on Monday August 29th, severe traffic congestion because of "bridges over the Schoharie Creek have been closed, including Route 5S and all lanes of the New York State Thruway between the Fultonville and Amsterdam exits. The Mohawk River's Lock 12 bridge between Tribes Hill and Fort Hunter also has been closed because of mechanical issues with the lock.," according to the Leader Herald. A bridge safety inspection would need to be performed by the New York State Department of Transportation. Eastbound thruway traffic was rerouted at exit 27, Amsterdam, North on Route 30 then East on Route 29, eventually down Main Street. Westbound Thruway traffic was rerouted at exit 34a, Syracuse, and eventually West onto Route 29, which also passed through Main Street. This inundation of vehicular traffic severely compromised response times by separating the fire house from points south of Main Street. A crew of 4 was recalled to position an engine at Knox Junior High School to respond to calls south of Main Street while the on duty crew remained in the firehouse to respond to calls North of Main Street with the remaining engine and ladder.