The new off-road 7564 fire engine has been in the works for the last two and a half years

ATASCADERO — The Atascadero Fire and Emergency Services unit finally received its new 7564 fire engine. The engine has been in Florida being built by Pierce Manufacturing. It will replace a fire engine that was put into service back in 2001 and has been serving on the front lines for the last 23 years.

“It’s about two and a half years in the making. We had our fleet folks sit down several years ago and start to spec it [the fire truck], and it took quite a bit of time to build it. We’re glad it’s in California, for sure,” said Matt Miranda, the battalion chief of Atascadero Fire and Emergency Services.

Miranda added that the new engine is an upgrade to what the department is replacing. The new fire truck is a 4×4 with higher clearance and the ability to angle differently when approaching and departing obstacles. The engine’s off-road capabilities mean that none of its parts will drag on any part of the obstacles it meets. On top of that, the new engine matches the department’s other four-by-four apparatus, which is held at Fire Station 1.


“We’re thankful for the newer technology and the new piece of equipment that’s much more reliable and cost-effective,” continued Miranda. “The huge part for us is just being able to have a reliable apparatus. It takes a lot of money to keep them running for 20 years, and so this one will be much more cost-effective in the way that we’re able to keep it in service.”

Though 7564’s primary purpose is to help Atascadero and its citizens, it will also be able to be used in the whole of San Luis Obispo County when called upon. It will also be able to head out to other areas of California when requested for larger fires. 

The engine will be stationed at Fire Station 2 at the south end of Atascadero, but people throughout the entire community will end up seeing it as it is out and about doing its job. Miranda says that it will be staffed with three to four members of the fire department, depending on staffing for the day.

“Its primary district will be on the south end of town. We do what we call cross-staffing of this engine. So, you’ll see us do business out of the larger fire engine most of the time because that’s set up for all kinds of incidents,” he said. “This type 3 apparatus, when we need it, we’ll take all of our personnel and move them from the big one [truck] to the smaller one, and use it on those more specialty wildland incidents where we need access.”

The 7564 engine was purchased using the fire department’s vehicle replacement fund, which they put money into yearly to be able to replace their engines, and current D-20 funds. But primarily, the department used the D-20 funds to fully fund the department’s replacement schedule for all their apparatuses and equipment, which will bring further benefits to the Atascadero Fire Department in the future when they need to replace more engines and equipment.

“Hopefully, it [7564] will be fully outfitted within the next month,” Miranda said. “Then, we’ll be training personnel on the use of the apparatus and all the different configurations over the next month and a half to two months. Our target is to have it in service before fire season comes around.”

Welcome to the community Fire Engine 7564.

Feature Image: Fire Engine 7564 is shown in front of Atascadero Fire Station 1. Photo by Camille DeVaul.