AFD receives federal grant for new gear

Photo by Rob Jonas

The Amsterdam Fire Department will receive funds for new equipment such as jackets, helmets and other gear according to a press release issued yesterday from Congressman Paul Tonko’s office. The $109,904 will come from the United States Homeland Security department’s Assistance to Firefighters grant program.

In the release, Amsterdam Fire Chief Michael Whitty is quoted as saying that the department’s current gear is aging and does not meet current standards.

“The funding from this grant will allow us to update our equipment to meet the new National Fire Protection Association standards,” Whitty said. “The gear our firefighters are wearing is approaching 10 years old. Now, we will be able to provide all new personal protective equipment in the form of jackets, helmets, boots and gloves that are the first line of defense for firefighters. I appreciate the congressman’s efforts as a big proponent of public safety and we are thankful for the work that he does for Amsterdam.”

In the release, Tonko thanked first responders in the Capital Region and went on to say, “Amsterdam is my home and my hometown, and the fight to protect our firefights is a deeply personal issue for me. I believe all first responders must be provided with the best equipment possible in order to do their jobs safely. We cannot allow the dangers and burdens of this work to be exacerbated because the lifesaving equipment that protects them is not up-to-date. I am pleased to fight for and secure funding to protect firefighters in Amsterdam.”

Tim Becker

Tim Becker is the owner of Anthem Websites Inc. which publishes The Compass. He serves as both editor and a writer.