The city of Rogersville is without their newest fire truck, and only tanker. The cause of the fire is unknown, but firemen speculate is was a mechanical malfunction.
Christopher Lapp alerted firemen after he walked out the gym and noticed the truck on fire.
"At first I thought it was a dumpster on fire. Then I see two other fire trucks and there is nobody there. They are all idling, so I run over and start yelling, 'Hey, your fire truck is on fire!'," Lapp said.
The Rogersville Volunteer Fire Department was having their monthly fish fry to raise money for operations when the tanker went up in flames.
"The person came by and said, 'Your truck is on fire'". At first we thought he was kidding, but we go out and sure enough, our truck was on fire," Assistant Fire Chief, Morris Lentz said.
Firemen rushed from the fish fry to put out the flames as the fuel tank caught fire. By the time the blaze was out, the tanker was seriously damaged.
"It is our only tanker, but the citizens of Rogersville do not need to be alarmed. We have several other trucks that we use as backup. That is just one of our fleet. We have an agreement with our neighboring departments that if we need a tanker, they will send one our way," Lentz said.
The tanker will be claimed on insurance Monday to be replaced or repaired as soon as possible. Community members in Rogersville are praising the fire department for their quick work putting out the fire and their continuous efforts in the community.
"The department is everything around here. It's volunteer. They cover a large area out here. It's not easy to get to things in time. The community counts on them and now they're going to have to count on them a little more with less resources," Lapp said.