LOCAL FIRE departments are often times the hub of their respective community. They are also, more times than not, dealing with financial issues.
Firefighting is an expensive proposition.
Equipment and turnout gear are cost prohibitive.
That is why fire departments are always striving to secure funding.
Federal and state grants can help fill in some of their shortcomings. But, unfortunately, such funding modes are not as plentiful as once was the case.
The Martins Ferry Fire Department, however, was the recent recipient of funding from a federal program.
U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) announced this week that the Ferry firefighters have been awarded $150,593 for Operations and Safety by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency Assistance to Firefighters Grants program.
The money will be of great use to a department that has repeatedly distinguished itself with dedicated and faithful service to the city and entire Ohio Valley.
The $150K award will help the department to update the resources it needs to maintain its high level of dependability. The funding must be used for training, facility improvements and modifications, and supplies such as protective equipment, any of which will enhance the department's safety-delivering prowess.
"Firefighters put their lives on the line each day to keep our communities safe," Sen. Brown said. "These new federal resources will help ensure that Martins Ferry's skilled responders have the updated resources they need to safely do their jobs."
We agree with Brown.
Firefighters are a special breed of individuals. They selflessly and bravely carry out their duties.
It is refreshing to see that the Martins Ferry Fire Department will gain funding to make their jobs a little safer.