|Hurricane Matthew left its damage along North Carolina flooding many towns and leaving thousands homeless while first responders worked 24/7. Many fire stations were also damaged from high water flooding them. The state reported that 17 dams had also failed, releasing millions of gallons of water into many towns.|
The Pine Terrace Volunteer Fire Department in Lumberton North Carolina lost all four of their fire engines in the fast flooding that occurred following Hurricane Matthew. The department’s station flooded and was reportedly condemned.
Castalia North Carolina Fire Chief Robert Varnell, Jr., said their department had a fire engine for sale and after seeing the effects of the hurricane on the state, the Board of Directors got together and decided they wanted to donate it to a fire department in need. Castalia’s Fire Department was notified of Pine Terrace’s situation, 167 miles south of them. Castalia’s Volunteer Fire Department decided they would donate their 1986 GMC/EEl Pumper-Tanker engine to the Pine Terrace Volunteer Fire Department in Robeson County.
Chief Varnell said Castalia’s Fire Department had been fortunate in the past that they’ve had things donated to them and have bought second hand items to use.
“We’ve been blessed over the years,” said Chief Varnell and he added that he was glad his department was able to help. “We’ve never been in a position where we could do something like this,” Varnell said.
In addition to the fire truck, Castalia’s Fire Department also donated 1,000 feet of hose along with a few other small tools used at fire scenes.
Salem Volunteer Fire Department of Nash County also donated four complete air packs with masks.
The truck was delivered to Chief Todd Allen of the Pine Terrace Volunteer Fire Department on Oct 23, 2016 said Chief Varnell.