Firefighting vehicles all seem to follow the same formula: big, red trucks that all looks the same. Jalopnik readers found ten blaze-extinguishing rigs that don't quite fit the mold.
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Now, before we go on, we want to give a little shout-out to something adorable that's not going to make the cut. This wonder is reportedly the world's smallest fire truck, operating in Nobleton, Ontario.
We struggle to believe it does anything other than look adorable and go on parades, but it's pretty fantastic.
The rest of the vehicles on this list are authoritatively used for fighting fires and responding to emergencies, and they spend more time looking absurdly awesome than absurdly adorable.
Did we forget any crazy firetrucks on this list? Let us know in Kinja below.
Photo Credit: Associated Press
This is a six-wheeled Polaris ATV designed for getting into remote, mountainous places, we assume. According to its for-sale listing it has a "75 Gallon Water Tank [and a] 5 Gallon Foam Cell with Foam Nozzle." What do you think, is the $37,500 price worth it for the littlest working firetruck you've ever seen?
The Atlanta airport started using this thing in the mid-1990s. It's a Colet K-15 Jaguar crash truck, designed for high-speed response to fires. The top speed is no less than 83 miles an hour. Check out the awesome fighter jet-style cockpit, too.
We want one.
You know your town is rich when you have a Rolls-Royce for a fire engine. This Phantom II was drafted into service in 1930.
Take one Youngman truck and shove a jet engine on top and you have this thing. It shoots water right out of that jet nozzle, which is pretty intense. Car News China reports that it can shoot "four tonnes of water every four minutes over 120 meters," and suspects the engine comes out of the Chinese version of the Soviet MiG-19 fighter.
Yet another good reason why firetrucks have the drivers right at the front of the vehicle nowadays is that they used to have to deal with things like this. Ohio-based firetruck manufacturer Ahrens-Fox just stuck all their machinery on the front of the vehicle, making the driver sit about twelve counties aft of the front wheels. The system didn't work out very well.
This is basically a MAZ-543 artillery tank, but with a gigantic hose on the top instead of a Scud missile. Powering this beast is a 38.8-liter V12 engine with no more than 525 horsepower and 610 ft-lbs of torque.
There aren't many fires in Grand Central station today, but a few decades ago, the annual volume of emergencies was in the triple digits. Twenty years ago, Grand Central got its own fire brigade, and the MTA detailed their adorably small fleet.
The Brigade is equipped with a unique fleet of electric carts customized for firefighting and medical emergencies. There's a fire truck, which is a 200-gallon pumper with 300 feet of hose, a rescue truck, with air packs, forcible entry tools and turnout gear, and an ambulance with a stretcher, three oxygen tanks, defibrillators, a ‘long board' to immobilize spine, medical gear, a stair chair, and first-aid supplies.
"They all have sirens, lights, the whole thing. They're kind of cool," [fire chief Sal Oliva] said.
While the biggest station on Antarctica, McMurdo Station, has a much more modern, ordinary-looking fire department today, back in 1974, it had one of these monster-truck style vehicles.
Suggested By: evoCS, Photo Credit: Bradford S. Miller/National Science Foundation/US Antarctic Program
How did you put out 2,000 degree Fahrenheit oil fires back when Saddam was lighting Kuwaiti wells in 1991? You strapped two MiG-21 jet fighter engines onto a WWII-era Soviet T-34 tank and blew the living crap out of the fire.
Technically, you fired six water hoses at the fire and then ran the jet engines through the stream, creating a blast of high-powered steam, which severed the stream of oil from where it ignites above ground. Read more about Big Wind at Car and Driver.
Even more badass than a Soviet tank with a water hose on it, or a Soviet tank with two jet engines on it are Soviet tanks with rockets on them designed to just blow whatever fire it is to kingdom come. Our favorite is "Impuls-2M," which takes a T-62 main battle tank and puts a 50-round rocket launcher on the top, shooting flame-retarding projectiles.