JUNEAU — Juneau’s new ambulance may not arrive until November, but the rig it will replace may be headed out of town — way out of town — this week.
At its regular, monthly meeting at city hall Tuesday night, the Juneau City Council unanimously approved sale of the emergency medical service’s 2006 Ford ambulance to the Gear Up Foundation, of South Salem, N.Y. for $10,000.
Juneau emergency medical technician Nathan Zank said Tuesday the new ambulance, approved by the council last month for purchase at a cost of $182,044, is not expected to arrive until about Thanksgiving.
However, he said the used, 2006 model may be on its way to Central America by week’s end.
Gear Up, Zank said, is an non-profit organization that buys fire apparatus, ambulances and “takes donations” of other vehicles for reuse in Third World countries. He confirmed that one of Juneau’s fire trucks found its way to Mexico some years ago under similar circumstances.
With the old ambulance soon gone and the new one still to come, Zank said Juneau has been granted a “loaner” for use in the interim by Foster Coach Sales, of Sterling, Ill., the dealer that sold the new ambulance to Juneau.
In May, the council approved buying a 2013, Ford F450, with a Horton ambulance conversion, to replace the 2006 model and its 1999 box remount purchased from Arrow Manufacturing, of Rock Rapids, Iowa.
Arrow, Zank said, offered to repurchase the 2006 ambulance for $8,000.
To buy the new ambulance, the council in May authorized application of about $13,000 from the city’s ambulance contingency fund and $5,000 from the ambulance equipment fund.
In a separate resolution at its May meeting, the council approved a $156,000, five-year loan from the state trust fund, at an annual interest rate of 2.5 percent, to bankroll the balance of the new ambulance cost after proceeds from the sale of the old ambulance were secured.
According to Juneau Clerk/Treasurer Gladys Mckay, the loan carries no penalty for prepayment.
Zank was one of six, Juneau emergency medical services staff who formed a special committee charged by the city’s public safety committee with investigating the new ambulance purchase.