U.S. Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer and U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand today announced $62,336 in federal funding for Chili Fire Department in the Finger Lakes Region. The funding was allocated through the Department of Homeland Security’s Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) Program. The funding will be used to update the Department’s hydraulic extrication tools, which allow for efficient and safe, removal of persons trapped in motor vehicles. The Department’s current hardware is over 15 years old and this new equipment will bring Chili Fire Department up to modern standards.
“It is essential that we provide our firefighters with the tools they need to do their jobs effectively,” said Senator Schumer. “Our first responders are our local heroes and our primary line of defense for safety and security—it is critical that we do all we can to ensure that they are well equipped and prepared to take on any emergency.”
“These federal funds will allow first responders at the Chili Fire Department to purchase the up-to-date equipment they need to do their jobs safely,” said Senator Gillibrand. “Every day our first responders risk their lives to protect us, and I will always fight in the Senate to make sure our local fire departments have the support they need to keep their communities safe.”
“We, at the Chili Fire Department, are pleased that we have been awarded an AFG Grant in the amount of $62K to update our hydraulic extrication tools. These tools will enable efficient, safe and timely extrications from motor vehicles, industrial and agricultural accidents. The equipment is necessary to continue with our current fire rescue mission and meets the highest funding priorities of the current AFG program. The new hardware will allow us to meet NFPA 1500-3 guidelines and will have an immediate impact on firefighter safety and the community. Our current tools are over 15 years old. Beside their age, they lack the power when working on newer vehicles with increased “crash worthiness”, ultra-high strength steel (UHSS) composites, and reinforcements. New vehicle construction materials prevent us from completing extrications in a timely manner and compromise the safety of our rescuers and patients. These new tools will allow us to operate within training standards and efficiently and safely extricate our patients,” said Chili Fire Department President Jim Leahy.
The Assistance to Firefighters Grants are administered by the Department of Homeland Security Federal Emergency Management Agency in cooperation with the Department’s United States Fire Administration. The grants are awarded on a competitive basis to the applicants that most closely address the program’s priorities and demonstrate financial need. More information on the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program can be accessed at http://www.fema.gov/firegrants.