The city of Dearborn is in the process of modernizing its fleet of aging police and fire vehicles.
The Dearborn City Council voted Tuesday to purchase 13 patrol cars from Woodhaven-based Gorno Ford at a cost of $329,425. The vehicles will be paid for through the police department's Drug Law Enforcement Fund.
According to information provided to the city council, police vehicles are placed on a four-year replacement schedule. This year's request calls for the purchase of 11 Ford Explorers at a cost of $25,585 each, and two sedans at a cost of $23,995 each.
Sgt. David Luckhardt said the sport utility vehicles will provide for more room for the department's "larger stature officers."
Luckhardt said sedans are too small for officers to get in and out due to limited space between the steering wheel and B-pillar (the frame post between the front and rear doors). The vehicles being replaced will be auctioned or reassigned within the DPS fleet.
The council also approved a $145,760 contract with Gorno Ford for the purchase of new fire department vehicles. The Dearborn Fire Department will buy three Ford Taurus sedans at a cost of $23,665, one Ford Explorer at a cost of $26,090, one cargo van ($23,394), and a Ford F-250 pick-up truck ($25,281).
The DFD vehicles are placed on a three-year replacement schedule. The city budgeted for five new vehicles during the current fiscal year, and an additional vehicle was added as part of the merger with the Melvindale Fire Department.