Electric Hose Company No. 4



Unit 1-2-5


Unit 1-2-4


The Electric Hose Company No. 4 has been providing continuous service to the Village of Babylon for over 100 years.  The Electric Hose has become the fifth company in the Department to reach this milestone.  Founded on April 4, 1902, the company took their name from its proximity to the old electric company on Cedar Street.

One of the major responsibilities of the Babylon Fire Department is to provide efficient rescue and fire protection to the various beach communities in the Town of Babylon along the Ocean Parkway.  The Electric Hose prides itself on being the primary response unit for all beach alarms.

Since its inception, the company has been quartered at three different stations on the same site at the corner of Cedar Street and Cooper Street, the most recent being erected in 1961.  In the beginning, the property, the firehouse, and apparatus were all owned by the company and not  the Village.  Residents living north of the railroad had to pay a special fee to keep the company operational.   Eventually, the company’s assets were deeded directly to the Village, which has maintained it to this day.

The E4 House has served as quarters for hand-drawn pieces of apparatus that later gave way to horse-drawn variety, and eventually in 1922, the first motorized pumper.  In 1961, the firehouse was completely renovated to reflect the neat one story brick architecture that appears today.  It is configured with a meeting room, kitchen, and two-bay truck room.  In September 1983, fire erupted in the unoccupied truck room causing considerable damage to the building.  Luckily the fire was extinguished and both the building and the trucks were back in service the next day.

Until 1910, all of the company’s firefighting apparatus was hand-drawn.  Later, teams of horses were introduced to provide quicker response, and were used exclusively until the first motorized REO wagon was launched into action in 1922.  The first motorized pumper, an American LaFrance was purchased in 1931.  Since 1948 the Electric Hose has operated two pumpers out of the E4 House, designated as units 1-2-4 and 1-2-5.

A 1954 International pumper eventually replaced the 1931 American La France after it was involved in a severe accident at the intersection of Higbie Lane and Sunrise Highway in West Islip.  Then in 1969, a new 1000 GPM  Ward La France was delivered and served as unit 1-2-5.  In 1974, the old Dodge 1-2-4 was replaced by a new four-wheel drive International pickup truck with a front mounted 750 GPM pump, making it ideal for beach operations because it could be driven to the waters edge to secure a water supply.  In 1985 unit 1-2-5 was replaced by a Pierce Arrow pumper.  In 1993, unit 1-2-4 was struck by an auto while responding to an alarm at the intersection of Cooper Street and East Main Street, and prematurely retired from service.  It was replaced with a Ford F-350 that had the same front-mounted pump.  In 2007 the F-350 was replaced by a custom built F-650 Firematic “Brute” beach engine that far exceeds the capabilities of the pickup.  The unit features four wheel drive, super single tires in the front and rear, a front mounted pump, a booster tank, and Scott 4.5 Air Paks.  In 2020 unit 1-2-5 was replaced with the current engine, an E-One Typhoon.