Noblesville Fire Department Holds ‘Wet Down Ceremony’ For New Trucks

12/05/2018

Wet Down Ceremony

The Noblesville Fire Department officially welcomed two new apparatuses into the fleet on Tuesday evening. NFD hosted a “Wet Down Ceremony” before the new engine and ladder trucks were marked into service at Station No. 71.

The history of the ceremony began when pumpers were horse-drawn. When new horses or pumpers were purchased, neighboring firehouses, department chiefs and citizens from the area community came out to celebrate the new addition. Local clergy came to bestow blessings upon the horse by throwing holy water onto it to “protect” it and give it long life, strength, speed and good health. The blessings were believed to ward off evil spirits that could affect the new addition to the firehouse.

“Traditions are very important in the fire service. They are how we pass down the pride and commitment to those who follow us,” said Chief Greg Wyant. “These traditions are a link to our past, and to our future.”

Tuesday’s “Wet Down Ceremony” included a blessing from NFD Chaplain Fitz Good, wetting down the new apparatus with water from Ladder Truck No. 77, drying the trucks, pushing the apparatus into the bays and being marked in service. Following the ceremony, the public was invited inside to view the new trucks and ambulance, which was added to the fleet earlier this year.

Both trucks will be housed at Station No. 71 in the Public Safety Building downtown. The Smeal engine truck is only 32 feet long and was specifically designed to maneuver through the narrower streets of downtown Noblesville. The 100-foot-tall Smeal aerial platform is replacing “Old Ladder 71,” which has been retired from active service. This is the first new platform ladder truck for Noblesville since 1991. Each apparatus also carries the department’s new paint scheme with gray over red and black.

Photos from the ceremony are available here.