Student or Learner
[ ... there are few sounds so exciting in Manhattan as those of fire apparatus dashing through
the night. At the outset there is tentative hint of the first-due company bullying his way trough midtown traffic... ]
Could you explain the meaning of "firist-due" for me??
Since it's talking about fire trucks, I assume that it means that the truck is from the fire station (company) that is the closest to the scene of the fire. Hence it is the first one due to arrive on the scene.
It's not a common expression. Maybe among firemen in large cities it is.