Snorkels in North Carolina

This is a re-posting of a Legeros Blog Archives posting from December 21, 2013, that’s no longer available on the old site, due to technical problems.

Articulating platforms, to be specific. Snorkel is a brand name. Let’s extend the discussion from this thread, as well as the topic itself, which replays on this blog every twelve to eighteen months.

Here are some photos. Still looking for more, such as posed shots of Durham’s Hi-Ranger, High Point’s Snorkel, and others we’ve missed. Photo credits include the Richard Adelman Collection (via eBay), Jeff Harkey, Andrew Messer, Mike Legeros, Lee Wilson, unknown via eBay, and a couple fire departments.

Click once or twice to enlarge:


Here’s the data: 

Department Unit Make/Model Height Pump Notes
Asheboro   1966 Ward LaFrance / Hi-Ranger 85 Yes  
Asheville Ladder 1 1977 ALF / Snorkel 85 No  
Charlotte Platform 1 1969 ALF AeroChief   Yes  
Charlotte Ladder 1 1984 Duplex-Grumman/Snorkel 85 Yes 1 of 3
Charlotte Ladder 16 19__ Pierce/Snorkel   Yes 2 of 3
Charlotte Ladder 18 19__ Pierce/Snorkel   Yes 3 of 3
Chocowinity Snorkel 1 1979 ALF/Snorkel   Yes Ex-Washington, NC
Durham Snorkel 1 1971 Ward LaFrance /Hi-Ranger  85 Yes  
Fayetteville   1980 Oshkosh/Pierce 85 Yes  
Frankin    1972 ALF AeroChief 85 No Ex-Greensboro
Gamewell   See Lenoir      
Goldsboro Snorkel 1 1977 ____/Snorkel 85 Yes  
Greensboro   1972 ALF AeroChief 85 No  
Greenville Snorkel 1 19__ Ward LaFrance / Hi-Ranger   Yes  
Henderson Snorkel 1 1977 Hendrickson/Pierce/Snorkel   Yes  
Henderson/Vance County    See above      
High Point   1976 Pierce/Oshkosh/Snorkel 75 Yes  
Lenoir Snorkel 1 1972 Pierce/Oshkosh/Snorkel   Yes Later served Gamewll FD. Now
privately owned.
Lexington   1988 Duplex D500/Gumman/Snorkel 85   Two-axle. Last seen in Amarillo, TX,
with the Snorkel remounted on a 6×6
for a tree-trimming business
North Wilkesboro   Unit 2105 1988 Duplex/Grumman/Snorkel 85 Yes 1500 GPM
Ocean Isle Beach   1971 ALF AeroChief 90 Yes Ex-Metro Dade, FL. Sold to Panama
Fire Apparatus in 1986. Refurbed,
painted red, sold to OIBFD. Later
sold to Iberia Parish Fire District #1
in Louisiana.
Raleigh Truck 1 1988 Pierce Arrow/Snorkel 85 No  
Rocky Mount   1978 Pierce/Snorkel      
Sanford   1968 ALF AeroChief 80 Yes  
Southern Shores   2002? ALF      
Spring Lake   19__ Young Crusader      
Stantonsville/Moyton   1978 Pierce/Oshkosh 85 Yes Ex-?
Statesville   1973 ALF / Snorkel 85 Yes  
Taylorsville Tower 1 Central Alexander, 1985 E-One/Snorkel   Yes ExSouthard,
Thomasville Snorkel 1 1967 FWD/Snorkel 75 Yes  
Vance County   See Henderson      
Washington   1979 ALF/Snorkel   Yes  
Western Carteret FD   1970 Young/Snorkel 75 No Two-axleFrom Long Island, NY
Wilson   1977 Pierce/Snorkel 85 Yes  
Winston-Salem Snorkel Unit 1
Aerial 3
1964 FWD/Baker/Pittman 75 Yes Two-axle
Winston-Salem Aerial 1 1968 Oshkosh/Pierce/Snorkel 85  Yes Three-axle

Plus Bronto Sky-Lifts

  • Military Ocean Terminal at Sunny Point – 200_ E_One/Bronto SkyLift with pump
  • Pembroke (L21) – 200_ E-One/Bronto SkyLift with pump


December 21, 2013 – Josh Clay
I think Charlotte may have also had an 80’s Grumman snorkel. Anyone else remember that one?

December 21, 2013 – Lt. Lemon
Photo showing Asheboro’s Snorkel operating on a commercial fire in March 2013. Thought it might be of interest.

December 23, 2013 – Legeros
Thanks Josh. Someone else was saying that very thing. Here’s Ladder 1, the third Snorkel from that area: Maybe someone has a color pic, posed.

December 23, 2013 – BFD1151
Couple of updates: The Lenoir snorkel later went to Gamewell VFD and is now privately owned in Lenoir. Lexington’s snorkel was a 1988 Duplex D500/Grumman. It was last seen in Amarillo,TX with the snorkel itself removed and remounted on a 6×6 by a tree trimming business Ocean Isle Beach had a 1971 ALF 90′ Aero Chief snorkel from Metro Dade,FL. It later went to Iberia Parrish Fire Dist #1 in Louisiana. The 1964 FWD snorkel in Winston-salem had a Baker body served as Aerial 3 for many years. Winston’ 1968 snorkel was an Oshkosh chassis and Pierce body. It was Aerial 1 downtown.

December 24, 2013 – TRNewman
The Henderson truck went to Vance County when the County hired its own Chief and split away from its leadership by contract with the City of Henderson.The truck when purchased was purchased on a 50/50 agreement between the City of Henderson and the County of Vance. The City housed the truck and provided the manpower to operate it, the County occurred most of the maintenance expense. When the City received their new ladder truck the truck was used for fires outside the city limits and for training and service when the new city truck was down for maintenance and was mainly stored at the city utilities garage. When the County received the truck they kept it for a while and then sold it to a dealer I believe in South Carolina and now have no idea where the truck.

December 8, 2014 – joseph webb

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  1. Pingback: Winston-Salem Snorkel in Action, 1975 – Legeros Fire Blog

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