Gorham-Fayette Fire Department in Fulton County is among 37 Ohio fire departments that will share $369,678 in grants from the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) under a program to protect firefighters from carcinogens and other harmful elements encountered during a fire fight.
The local fire department will received $14,600 to purchase an extractor/washer, 60 pairs of washable gloves, and 60 barrier hoods.
The fire departments are receiving the funding under BWC’s Firefighter Exposure to Environmental Elements Grant Program, which helps departments purchase safety gear, exhaust systems, and specialized washing machines. Because residue collected on firefighters’ gear during a blaze can cause respiratory disease, cancer, and other ailments, it is important not only to wear appropriate protective gear, but also to ensure it is cleaned properly.
“The fire community’s tremendous response to this program shows they understand the importance of equipping every firefighter with the appropriate protective gear,” said BWC Administrator/CEO Sarah Morrison. “BWC is pleased to be part of the effort to increase awareness while funding equipment that can limit serious health consequences down the road.”
Originally funded at $2 million a year, Morrison last month announced an increase in funding for the program due to heavy demand.