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Charleston fire department debuts custom-built truck, state-of-the-art facility

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Members of the Charleston Fire Department have a new place to call home.

Thursday, Charleston Mayor Joe Riley along with members of the city council dedicated Fire Station 9, located at 1451 King Street. 

The five bay, two-story station will house fire trucks, as well as a hazmat unit.  The building is equipped with a fitness center, conference room, and full kitchen, and will also serve as the administrative headquarters for the city's fire chief and her staff.

"All of this adds up to our ability to serve," said Charleston Fire Chief Karen Brack.

The department also unveiled the newest member of it's fleet.

For the first time in nearly 60 years, the city will operate a 100-foot aerial tiller.  The custom-built truck is meant for two-drivers, one from the front, the other in the rear, designed to navigate through the narrow streets of Charleston's downtown square.

Nicknamed Hazel, the aerial tiller is named in honor of former Battalion Chief Hazel Wine Jr.  Wine served the Charleston community for over 40 years.  He retired in 2006 and passed away in March of 2010.

"Firefighting meant everything to him," said daughter Marcella Wine-Snyder.  "He put his blood, sweat and tears into his work."

"Hazel" will be housed in Station 15, located on Coming Street.

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