Leflore County Fire Dept. lands grant of nearly $400K
The Leflore County Fire Department is going to get almost $400,000 from Washington to purchase equipment that will better protect volunteer firefighters.
The $382,546 grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency will be used to purchase 60 self-contained breathing apparatuses and 32 additional face masks.
The equipment is worn by firefighters to provide breathable air when battling a fire inside a structure.
Bobby Norwood, the county’s fire coordinator, said the new devices will replace all of the county’s current breathing apparatuses, most of which were purchased in the early 1980s. The existing equipment had become “so antiquated” that it could not be brought up to National Fire Association Protection standards, Norwood said.
He said this was the first time Leflore County has received money under the federal Assistance to Firefighters Grant program.
“I’m very, very pleased that we were chosen to receive it. ... I’m hoping this will save many lives for years to come.”
Leflore County’s award was among almost $3.2 million in FEMA grants, announced Friday by Sens. Roger Wicker and Cindy Hyde-Smith, that were awarded to Mississippi fire departments.
“With support for additional personnel, new trucks, safety equipment and training, this latest round of FEMA grants represents an important step forward for Mississippi fire departments across our state,” Wicker said in a statement.
“Public safety and emergency preparedness is essential. These grant awards will not only help equip and train firefighters, they will also promote fire prevention and safety in these communities,” Hyde-Smith added.