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Joint Base Andrews News

NEWS | March 1, 2024

New wheels steeped in old tradition: Joint Base Andrews fire truck push-in ceremony

By Senior Airman Matthew-John Braman | 316th Wing Public Affairs

Base leaders and community members gathered at Fire Station 2 for a fire truck push-in ceremony, celebrating the arrival of two new firefighting assets, Friday. 

The tradition of the push-in ceremony dates back more than a century in the fire service when equipment was horse-drawn, and communities came together to physically push the equipment back into the bay. As technology improved, this tradition remained as it symbolized good luck for the new equipment and as a demonstration of community pride. The 316th Logistics Readiness Squadron, responsible for the assets utilized by the fire department, played a lead role in the ceremony. 

"This event is quite important to the LRS," remarked Michael Cassidy, 316th LRS fire truck foreman. "It signifies a shift in how the fire service here treats their assets. Our mission at Fire Truck Maintenance is to support the fire department in keeping the airfield open and safe, and this ceremony underscores the significance of their apparatus in fulfilling that mission."  

The event’s pinnacle was the truck wet down, a tradition where the new fire trucks are sprayed with water as a symbol of good fortune. Attendees participated in the symbolic act of pushing the new fire trucks into their bays, marking their official entry into service. 

"We teach our Airmen and our civilian firemen here that tradition and pride are very important things,” said Michael Melson, Fire Station 2 station chief. “It’s big for the Air Force, having two new vehicles come in this short period of time.” 

The 316th Comptroller Squadron was responsible for acquiring the funding for the new vehicles and their timely arrival. 

"We utilized unused funds from other projects throughout the Air Force,” said U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Trivendhiran Pillai, 316th CPTS commander. “If we had gone the traditional route, the trucks may not have been here for another 3-4 years.” 

U.S. Air Force Col. Todd E. Randolph, 316th Wing and installation commander, highlighted the strength of the community and dedication of the Andrews fire house during the ceremony. 

"Today's fire truck push-in ceremony is a testament to the strength of our community, the dedication of our teams, and the leadership that guides us forward," Randolph remarked. "Let us continue to work together, push forward as one, and uphold the proud traditions that define Joint Base Andrews."