The Arlington City Council is helping to purchase a second set of firefighting gear for all Arlington firefighters.
According to the Arlington Fire Department, the City Council is working to secure the funds for the new gear in an effort to promote the health and safety of all 375 Arlington firefighters.
The City Council has approved $325,000 for the 2021 fiscal year, the first year of a three-year process that will provide all firefighters with a second set of firefighting gear.
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The Arlington Fire Department said that due to the hazards of firefighting contaminant exposures, the acquisition of new equipment is an important step in reducing firefighter health and safety risks.
"Prior to this program's approval, the Arlington Fire Department had instituted multiple cancer-limiting initiatives but a second set of firefighting gear was still an on-going goal for the Department," Don Crowson, Fire Chief and Director of Emergency Management, said. "This gear purchase furthers the Department's focus on adhering to national fire service best practice standards for preventing firefighter cancer. We very much appreciate the partnership in this vitally important effort!"
Firefighters are currently provided with annual physicals, additional firefighting hoods, decontamination and personal hygiene procedures, and gear extractor cleaning units at fire stations, the Arlington Fire Department said.
The plan to purchase the new gear is part of a collaborative effort involving the City Manager, the City Council, the Arlington Professional Fire Fighters Association, and Fire Department leadership.
"Our firefighters appreciate the actions our Mayor, Council, City Manager Trey Yelverton and Arlington Fire Department Administration have taken in their commitment to purchase this critical equipment and promote our fight against these cancers before they can impact any more of our firefighters," David Crow, the President of the Arlington Professional Fire Fighters, said.