Jeeps have often been modified as fire apparatus by individual fire departments; frequently the work is done by firefighters on a volunteer basis. This produces a vehicle that suits the department's particular needs, and usually on a low budget. Some CJ-2As (1946-49) converted in this way can still be seen in museums or fire department collections.
The Reiffton PA Fire Co. was quick off the mark following World War II, purchasing this 1946 Willys and setting it up as their brush fire unit, possibly before the official "Jeep Fire Truck" had even been launched (see CJ-2A Fire Engine History.) It was in service for about a decade, and the company apparently liked it because they subsequently bought a Hahn Fire Apparatus Jeep FC-170, and as of 2023 are still running a CJ-5 and CJ-8 under their new name Exeter Township VFD.
The unique 1947 CJ-2A seen in this undated archival photo was set up by the South Haven, Michigan Fire Department with a gas-powered pump out front and a nicely-done tailboard in the back. The Jeep later went to Oxford, Michigan.
The South Haven Jeep has now received a complete frame-off restoration and a Barton/American crankshaft-driven pump. It has many new parts including a 60-gallon poly tank wrapped in aluminum diamond plate, booster reel, lights and siren, brakes, radiator and wiring. Not to mention new gold leaf accents. See the interior and the engine (420K JPEGs).
As of early 2022 this beauty is for sale with a clean Illinois title. Thanks to Mike Whalen for the photos.
This 1947 Jeep CJ-2A was previously in service with the Day Heights, Ohio FD, who added the booster tank and used it as a grass fire rig. This department no longer exists, and the Jeep is now owned by the Cincinnati Fire Museum. (Photo by Steve Hagy.)
This CJ-2A was converted as a crash truck for the airport at Dafoe, Saskatchewan in 1946/47. Later used at Yorkton and at St. Andrews Airport near Winnipeg, it was donated to the Royal Aviation Museum of Western Canada in Winnipeg in 1990. Photo by AdolfGalland on Flickr, under CC.
Here's another unusual conversion, in Queluz, Portugal, a small city on the outskirts of Lisbon. The Jeep is equipped as an auxiliary lighting unit, with a generator in the back to power the lights. José Lucena sent this photo, and says "It's the only one of its kind in Portugal, to my knowledge. The original vehicle was built in1946 and was put in service by the Fire Dept, after an in-house fullconversion, in 1956. 'A.P. No.1' stands for Auto Projectores (meaning Floodlight Vehicle) No.1. On the front fender there is a collapsible tripod for placing an extra searchlight on the ground. Cable reels (130K JPEG) were carried in the open rear box. Two CO2 fire extinguishers were also carried."
The business end of this 1948 CJ-2A brush fire unit rides on dual rear wheels. As of this writing, the Jeep is owned and operated by the North Sewickley Volunteer Fire Department in Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania.
See also a front and rear photos (50K JPEGs). Thanks to John Hudson of the NSVFD.
Thanks to the contributors. -- Derek Redmond
See also the New Salem, NY CJ-2A Attack Engine.
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