WEST MEAD TOWNSHIP — A new SUV is patrolling township streets.

Township supervisors on Tuesday unanimously ratified the purchase of a 2019 Ford Explorer police utility vehicle.

“It went into service last Tuesday,” Chief Chip Brown said following the meeting.

The $33,875 vehicle, which was fitted with additional police equipment costing $12,300, was purchased from McCandless Ford through COSTARS, the state’s cooperative purchasing program. The additional equipment was installed by Ibis Tek of Butler.

The vehicle replaces a 2011 Ford Crown Victoria cruiser that was sold to the City of Meadville after the city’s K9 cruiser was involved in a May 2018 crash.

“It’s basically the same vehicle as the (department’s) other 2015 Explorer,” Brown said.

The new SUV is equipped with all-wheel drive, Brown added, which will be an improvement over the rear-wheel drive of the cruiser it replaces.

The vehicle is not yet equipped with a camera system, Brown told the supervisors.

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