Local Fire Departments Slated For $500,000 In Funding

State Sen. Catharine Young, R-Olean, has secured $500,000 in funding to help volunteer and professional fire departments in Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua and Livingston counties acquire or upgrade lifesaving emergency apparatus, firefighter safety gear and other equipment.

“Our firefighters set aside personal health and safety to assist those in need at any time of the day or night. From residential and commercial fires, to water rescues, to serious motor vehicle accidents and more, the scope of emergency situations that firefighters are called upon to respond to is ever-increasing. It is essential that they have proper emergency equipment to aid in rescues as well as the necessary protective gear when they are battling fires,” Young said. “This grant funding will help meet that goal without taking operational funds from fire department budgets or imposing an added burden on property taxpayers.”

In order to be considered for the funding, fire departments were invited to submit requests for equipment or capital improvements up to $10,000. Items to be funded in whole, or in part, with the grant monies include: generators, turnout gear, a water rescue team trailer, pagers, a pumper, air-packs with thermal imaging cameras, a “Jaws of Life” unit, a high band communication system, rescue jacks and cribbing, a fire siren, and station renovations.

“It is impossible to place a value on the lifesaving contributions of our firefighters. They respond to horrific fires and emergencies with professionalism, dedication and the utmost concern for the safety of those involved. I am incredibly grateful to the firefighters in my district, and across New York state, for their willingness to serve in such a vital capacity, and put themselves in harm’s way when necessary to help others. Such commitment reflects a depth of character that is truly inspiring,” Young said. “National Fire Prevention Week is a fitting time to reflect on the outstanding service of our firefighters and to honor them by educating ourselves on fire prevention and safety measures. From making sure our homes have working smoke detectors, to creating an escape plan and staging practice drills, a few basic precautions can help prevent tragedy.”