The Somerville Board of Aldermen Thursday approved a measure to borrow $2.3 million for new fire trucks.
Thomas Ross, president of Somerville Fire Local 76, the firefighters' union, said the funds would be used to purchase two new fire engines and one new ladder truck.
Ross said two of Somerville's three ladders are getting old. Ladder 3 is about 18 years old, and Tower 1 is 19 years old. Ladder 2 is relatively new, about six years old, but it will be sent to Wisconsin soon for repairs that will take several months to complete. In its absence, the fire department will use its spare ladder truck, which is 24 yeas old.
Fire departments are not supposed to use trucks that are older than 25 years as "front line" apparatus, Ross said.
The new vehicles will make work safer for firefighters, and "it's [safer] for the citizens of Somerville, too," the Local 76 president said.