Ladder 34 Story
20 years ago, a young boy raced down from his room, through the house and into his father's fire car as there was a reported fire a few miles down the street. We were first on scene, “Car 34 on scene, we’ve got a two story residence, heavy smoke showing from the second story windows. Have responding units stretch a line into the front door and do a search. Car 34 will have command” Someday, I will be a fireman
Growing up, I lived out every little boy's dream. Summer afternoons were spent at the firehouse, washing trucks, rolling hose and dreaming of the day when I could join the ranks.
20 years have passed and in that time, many things have changed in the fire service. While our personal protective equipment has significantly improved, the fires we are fighting today are fueled with plastics and engineered lumber creating an environment much more dangerous than fires in years past. When we enter a burning structure, the only line of defense that we have is a fire hose. It protects us from 1200 degree temperatures as we move towards the seat of the fire in an effort to save lives and property.
When a fire hose is damaged, it is immediately removed from service and discarded. While these failed sections of fabric are no longer suitable for firefighting, they carry a story with them unlike any other.
My father retired several months before I was hired as a firefighter. In the fire service, every member is appointed a number much like a sports team. I was honored to take on the number that my father had carried for his 28 years of service as I began mine. Number 34
I set out on a journey in an effort to tell the heroic story of fire hose and the countless lives that it has protected. With almost 300,000’ of fire hose saved from some of the oldest fire companies in America, there are no two sections that resemble one another. Every product manufactured by Ladder 34 is unique. The fire hose material used in our products is authentic. The faded colors and textures of fabric which are woven into our products were earned in their years of service.