East Fork receives grant for new wildland engine
September 21, 2017
The East Fork Fire Protection District has received a 2016 Assistance To Firefighter's Grant in the amount of $315,000 to purchase a new Type III Wildland / Urban Interface Engine. The district will need to provide a 10 percent match of $35,000.
The unit is designed and constructed for fighting wildland fires and will accommodate four firefighters. The four-wheel drive unit is equipped with both a stationary pump and an independent pump to allow the unit to pump water while the apparatus is mobile. This is the first new factory built apparatus of its type that the district has been able to purchase since 2001. The existing five similar units are all in excess of 15 years old. The district did construct, in house, three similar engines ten years ago and refurbished three others over the same time period.
District Chief Tod Carlini, who completed the grant application, was very pleased with the award. The district is still challenged financially in trying to meet its capital equipment needs. Chief Carlini noted "this is a very timely grant award. We are very excited and pleased to receive this grant."
The district had made the same application last year but was denied. The most recent award will be the third time that the district has received funds under the Assistance To Firefighter's Grant Program (AFG). The district was able to purchase fire station exhaust systems and Self Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA) with the other two grants. Under this program the district has received over $1,000,000 in funds over the past 15 years.
The primary goal of the Assistance to Firefighters Grants (AFG) is to enhance the safety of the public and firefighters with respect to fire-related hazards by providing direct financial assistance to eligible fire departments, nonaffiliated Emergency Medical Services organizations, and State Fire Training Academies. This funding is for critically needed resources to equip and train emergency personnel to recognized standards, enhance operations efficiencies, foster interoperability, and support community resilience.
The district is hoping to be able to acquire the new unit prior to the 2018 wildand fire season. The East Fork Fire Protection District provides service to 96% of Douglas County and is very prone to large wildland fires. This past year the district experience several wildland fires including the 7,000 acre Preacher Mine Fire in the Pine Nut Mountains.
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East Fork also provides mutual assistance on fires within the region and within the Western United States. Crews and individuals filling overhead positions at many of the larger western state's wildland fires bring back valuable experience for fires with in the district. Chief Carlini noted that he is exceptionally proud of those individuals and the effort they have made to attain the certifications they have and that place them in high demand nationally and provide a high level of expertise locally.