Firefighters get grant for breathing equipment

For The Recorder
Tuesday, January 30, 2018

PLAINFIELD — The Plainfield Volunteer Fire Department was recently given a grant of $37,475 from the Dextra Baldwin McGonagle Foundation, an independent organization based in New York City.

According to Assistant Fire Chief Dave Alvord, the funding has allowed the department to purchase five new self-contained breathing apparatuses, which provide breathable air to firefighters in compromised environments.

Compliant with 2013 National Fire Protection Association standards, the new SCBAs will replace older units currently carried on Engine 3, the department’s first-responding attack pumper.

Alvord said that over the past several years, the Plainfield Volunteer Fire Department had applied to the Federal Assistance to Firefighters grant program, but every application had been denied.

The department then teamed up with retired Plainfield Fire Officer Bob Corash to request funding from the Dextra Baldwin McGonagle Foundation, and the application was accepted in the fall of 2017.

“This unexpected funding allows us to keep our department members’ equipment compliant with NFPA updated requirements, and it also allows us to now approach our town with a much lower request for assistance for the next fiscal year,” Alvord said. “For a small town like Plainfield, any assistance towards fiscal relief is crucial these days.”

Members of the Fire Department have begun training on the new SCBAs and plan to put the units into service once all members are properly trained.