Thursday, July 26, 2007
Grant funds $19,000 in equipment
By BARRY BURLESON
Holly Springs Fire Department rescue workers have to extricate victims from vehicle wreckage about 70 times a year.
Their tough task received a boost last week, thanks to a full set of new extrication equipment courtesy of a federal grant through the Commercial Equipment Direct Assistance Program (CEDAP). The cost, approximately $19,000, is fully funded by the grant, which means no cost to the City of Holly Springs.
“This additional equipment increases our capabilities and saves the taxpayers’ dollars,” said fire chief Kenny Holbrook. “We average a little over one extrication a week. They seem to come in flurries. With the lighter cars and higher speeds, they (extrications) have become more necessary.”
The equipment was delivered by Mark Flowers with Empire Truck Sales (of Hattiesburg), a dealer for AMKUS Rescue Systems. Flowers also spent time training firemen on Wednesday morning of last week.
He said the Holly Springs Fire Department was one of only eight in the State of Mississippi to receive the grants and “a bunch applied.”
The equipment is aluminum-based and lighter weight.
“That definitely helps,” Holbrook said. “That means less fatigue on the firefighter.”
The Holly Springs Fire Department has received a grant the first two years of the CEDAP. Last year the department got a thermal imaging camera which allows firemen to see through smoke and darkness.
“We’re very appreciative of this program,” Holbrook said, “and we’re very fortunate.”
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