German firetrucks for Nepal
As more high rises go up in Nepal's cities, the country's fire-fighting services have not kept up with the need, especially for ladders that can take hoses to greater heights. Now, a new initiative called Nepal Fire Truck Expedition has driven a donated fire-fighting vehicle 10,000km overland from Berlin, via Turkey, Iran, Pakistan and India to arrive in Kathmandu on 26 November. The truck was driven by Merle Mila, a German model for Porsche and accompanied by polar expedition photographer Martin Hartley and Thomas Kelly, a Kathmandu-based photographer.
The overland trip took one month, and Nepal’s first fully functional vehicle with a 30m ladder was exhibited at Hanuman Dhoka on Saturday.
Said Mila: “Nepal needs fire trucks. A country with over 30 million people should have more than a small handful of old fire engines.” Last month, the Kathmandu Metropolitan City purchased three new fire trucks, but their ladders only go to 10m.
The truck traversed Iran even as unrest swept the country, and went through Balochistan which has seen frequent violence and had a police escort throughout.