Keeping JeffCo deputies on the road - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Keeping JeffCo deputies on the road

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BIRMINGHAM - AL -

One city's surplus vehicles are keeping Jefferson County deputies on the street. The office purchased ten SUVs from the Hoover Police Department to replace patrol cars dating back to the 90s that are beyond repair and less compatible with the office's growing demands.

The county sees it as an affordable way to keep people safe.

"These are their offices and they are depending on these vehicles to get them to their calls safely and in a timely manner," explained Sgt. Chuck Jaeger of the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office.

But responding safely and in a timely manner can be challenging. Jaeger says most of the cars are at least ten years old and eventually get beyond repair.

New cars haven't been an option for several years. But Hoover police's surplus vehicles are providing an alternative.

"The deputies like them because of the additional storage capacity. Fortunately for us, when we got them from Hoover, they were pretty much equipped with all the emergency equipment- lights, shields, things like that," said Jaeger.

The Sheriff's Office and other local police departments, like Childersburg and Harpersville, are purchasing Hoover's old Tahoes, which are less than ten years old with less mileage. They cost about what departments would pay just to purchase the emergency equipment on another car. It's the only affordable option for the cash strapped county.

"This is the direction we are going to be moving into. Working, looking outside the box with the Sheriff's Office purchasing these nice new vehicles," said County Manager Tony Petelos.

The county already owns ten and plans on rolling out more.

 "That helps us to be able to have operational vehicles for our deputies to drive," said Jaeger.

The Sheriff's Office plans on purchasing more from the city to replace other old cars.