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The Centralia City Council approved extensive repairs to one of the Centralia Fire Department’s aging vehicles during its meeting Monday evening.

Council members accepted a bid from Fairfield-based Dark Horse Diesel Repair to replace the truck’s transmission at a cost of $27,219.50. Under the agreement, the supplier will make the repairs on-site, eliminating the need for the city to pay to have the vehicle shipped elsewhere.

According to the fire department, the 2002 vehicle has already had to be repaired six times since 2009 for transmission problems. The 75-foot vehicle was used more extensively in January when the fire department’s new fire engine was involved in an accident. With the 2002 vehicle also out of service, the fire department is now continuing to use a 1993 fire engine to perform additional operations.

Fire Chief Jeff Day says repairs to the damaged new fire truck should be completed in about four weeks. The accident caused damage to the connection between the cab and the rest of the fire truck, as well as damage to the front end.

Day said this year’s budget for an additional pump did not meet needs, but he was confident new equipment could be purchased in the future.

Centralia City Manager Kory Smith says he is looking for grants that could help the city purchase at least one new truck.

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