New equipment that will look to help improve the Erie Fire Department is on the way after the city received several grants. The chief says now that the money is secured to bring in the equipment, it will change the future of the department.
It’s technology to bring the Erie Fire Department up to speed.
“These nine iPads that we were able to place in service with leverage data from the Erie County 911 Center directly to our fire apparatus in real time and it will also leverage data from the Erie Water Works to hydrant locations and main sizes.” said Captain Matt Costello.
Another addition coming into the department is bail out kits and training, which looks to help secure the safety of the first responders. 77 self-contained breathing apparatus replacement units will also be purchased, along with an air compressor fill station for filling the cylinders. The city has received more than $500,000 in the Assistance to Firefighters Grant.
“We will be capable of higher pressure in our tanks, which will extend our work ability within a fire and its important because SCBA’s, other than water, is the most important tool a firefighter has.” said Chief Joe Walko.
Now that the grant money is secured, the work to bring in a new cascade unit is just beginning.
“It will probably be about six months. There’s three major companies that provide SCBA’s and we are going to look at them, test them to see if they’re compatible with what our needs are.” Chief Walko said.
All of the new equipment became available to the department through separate grants.
The department just found out they will be getting a second round of grant money for the bail out equipment.
- For the iPads, CSX Transportation awarded the Erie Fire Department $5,000.
- For the Bryx Fire Alerting System, a total of $72,500 was awarded from multiple sources including the Hamot Health Foundation.
- For the bail out kits and training, $12,000 was awarded from the Lieutenant Joseph P. DiBernardo Foundation
In addition, Chief Joe Walko announced that the city has received more than $500,000 in the Assistance to Firefighters Grant. This allows the department to purchase the 77 self-contained breathing apparatus replacement units and an air compressor fill station.