STOCKTON (CBS13) — Stockton’s fire trucks could soon host advertisements.
The Stockton Fire Department proposed displaying public safety messages on removable decals as a way to bring in revenue. Fire officials have researched a similar fire department advertising program happening in Arizona.
“Have you checked your blood pressure lately? Brought to you by a hospital,” said Fire Chief Jeff Piechura providing an example of what an ad may read.
The Stockton Fire Department is one of the few fire departments in the nation that doesn’t provide school fire safety programs, said Piechura. The programs were cancelled in the early 2000s, because of budget cut backs.
“We’ve traditionally done fire presentations in those schools, provide handouts, coloring books, informational material,” said Fire battalion chief Van Riviere. “In the last five years, we’ve lost about 38 percent of our staff and our workload has gone up.”
The city filed for bankruptcy in 2013.
The potential advertising revenue could help bring back some of the public fire education. Piechura said one ad would cost $10,000 to run a whole year.
The Stockton Fire Department has advertised before in 2008 when Food 4 Less helped buy the department’s rescue vehicles. The new ads will be different.
“This is a little bit bigger and this will take about one to four compartment doors,” said Riviere.
Stockton City Council will vote on the fire truck ad proposal on Tuesday. Piechura said he thinks it will pass.
The firefighters, however, are not as excited about the ads. Several said they like the traditional red trucks to remain the way they are.
“The fire service doesn’t change very rapidly and I would expect there would be some people who don’t think this is a wonderful idea,” said Riviere.
Piechura said firefighters won’t be ad men and they won’t be driving around the city to promote the advertisements.
“There won’t be a special need for us to go out and drive around for an hour, no, ” said Piechura.
If approved, the fire trucks could be displaying ads within 60 days.