Bradenton plant builds fire trucks for agencies around the world

A local manufacturing company builds emergency vehicles for agencies around the world -- and they're hiring.

One of the Pierce Manufacturing plants is right here in Bradenton. The company was founded in 1913 in Appleton, WI. In 1999, the first firetruck was built at the Bradenton location.  Charley ventured out to one of the largest manufacturers for emergency vehicles, where they build for agencies in all states within the U.S. and in 45 countries.

Fun fact: One out of every three fire trucks on the road was made by Pierce Manufacturing.

“These trucks,” Charley said during his tour of the facility, “are going to be part of saving lives.”

The company just completed an order for China, where the Chinese language was written on the panel and logo.

Hillsborough County and the city of Zephyrhills' fire trucks are among the local agencies that have their emergency vehicles built here.

Charley learned the steps taken to build a firetruck along the plant's assembly line.

It takes about 15 days to build a fire truck, which is about 1,100 to 2,000 hours of labor. It begins with the rolling chassis, where the engine, radiator and cab are mounted. Next is the cab testing station to test the air condition, start the truck for the first time, and run diagnostic tests.  The company said their first priority is making sure firefighters are safe.

The assembly line takes you further into the pump mounting station, installing the hose bin, and much more. There are as many as 20,000 standard options for a firetruck -- that includes deciding among 220 shades of red paint.

As Charley said, Pierce Manufacturing is where, “Matchbox cars come to life.”

They are hiring more than 400 employees. Visit to see the openings, or to learn more about how they build emergency vehicles.

Pierce Manufacturing
1512 38th Avenue East
Bradenton, FL 34208