New turntable ladder begins service in Milton Keynes

Thu 29 Jan, 2015

This is the new turntable ladder at Great Holm Fire Station, which started active service at 6pm today.

The vehicle, which cost £570,000 and is expected to be in service until 2030, includes state- of-the-art technology which enables firefighters to operate very quickly and safely, especially in confined surroundings.

Features include a 32-metre ladder, thermal imagery and a remote control function that can be operated by means of a built-in camera system. Camera images can also be directly relayed to a command vehicle as well as a remote support room.

The specification means that it can direct water from height and provide an overview of an incident without the need to put firefighters in a risk area. 

The finances were secured in part by a successful funding bid from the Department for Communities and Local Government and from Buckinghamshire & Milton Keynes Fire Authority.

Chief Fire Officer Jason Thelwell said: "This represents a significant investment in the safety of both the public and our fire crews by Buckinghamshire & Milton Keynes Fire Authority and the Government. It will make a major contribution to the safety of the communities we serve and protect for many years to come."

The specification for the new vehicle was developed by a working group which included engineering staff, equipment technicians and aerial-trained firefighters.

Thanks to its short wheelbase chassis, jacking system and ladder configuration, it can be used in narrow roads, confined spaces and within many house driveways.

Jason added: "The new and improved high-reach capacities and modern nature of the appliance significantly increase our ability to keep our firefighters safe when undertaking firefighting duties and rescues at heights. 

"This is very positive step and I am particularly pleased that staff who worked on the project managed to deliver a product that is on time, on cost and fit for purpose."


  • The model is a Metz L32A-XS turntable ladder on a Scania P320 chassis. It was supplied by Rosenbauer UK, who are the supplying agent for Metz appliances in the UK.
  • Following the completion of training by staff who will crew and use the appliance, the new vehicle went "on the run" at 6pm on Thursday 29 January 2015.
  • Its fleet number is 035, its registration number is KX64 CDE and its call sign is FJC 11A8.
  • Its first call-out was at 10.37pm on Wednesday 4 February 2015 to a fire in a derelict building in Buckingham.
  • Buckinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service has a similar aerial appliance based at High Wycombe Fire Station.