PERTH AMBOY — The city’s fire department will receive a $198,450 grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s assistance to firefighters program, department officials announced.
The grant was awarded to improve the city’s ability to protect the health and safety of the public, as well as that of the first-responder personnel in fire related emergencies.
“We are looking out for the well-being of our firefighters because they needed to be protected to the best of our ability while they work to protect our families,” said Councilman Fernando Gonzalez, a Democrat who was instrumental in obtaining the funds.
“With the ever present fiscal constraints that are being placed on not only the fire department, but all municipal departments, I am appreciative that we will most importantly be able to greatly improve the safety of our firefighters, and will be able to do so without relying on limited property taxpayer dollars to do so through this grant award,” said Fire Chief David Volk.
The grant awarded will allow the fire department to increase the safety of department members through the replacement of a majority of the department’s Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA), which were purchased by the department in 1991 and are still in use today.
“This equipment protects our fire fighters from breathing dangerous smoke from a blaze and improves their ability to enter a building to either rescue occupants or extinguish flames,” said Gonzalez. “Perth Amboy’s Fire Department provides rescue and chemical, biological, radiation, and nuclear explosive mass decontamination response within the Middlesex County area.”
The new equipment expected to be purchased in the upcoming season will service the surrounding community and the entire New York metropolitan area, in the event of an incident similar to the one on Sept. 11, 2001.
“I am grateful for the grant that will assist in the safety of those who protect our residents,” said Diaz. ”Councilman Gonzalez and Chief Volk should be congratulated for successfully pursuing these funds.”
Lt. Scott Bromirski presents a Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA) cylinder and Chief David Volk holds a SCBA backpack as Mayor Wilda Diaz looks on. (Photo courtesy of Perth Amboy)
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