Fire department receives funds

BUCKHANNON — The Washington District Volunteer Fire Company has been awarded funding from the West Virginia Division of Forestry, which will go toward better equipping its firefighters and maintaining the safety of its community.

Through the approved Volunteer Fire Assistance grant, the fire company received $1,442.58. With the awarded funds, the company will be able to purchase a new chain saw, along with chaps, helmets, ear protectors, and a forestry hose for brush fires and a nozzle to go with the new hose.

Kevin Huffman, fire chief of the Washington District Volunteer Fire Company, said the fire company has lost a few sections of the old forestry hose while on scene.

“Using it on scenes, it gets holes burned in it or cut in it from rocks,” he said.

Huffman said the fire company has received this grant in the past, but not since he became fire chief in 2015.

Alongside the awarded grant, the volunteer fire company recently purchased new rescue tools, including a set of Jaws of Life, a cutter and a spreader.

Huffman said the majority of the funds to purchase the safety equipment came from the fire fee, which residents of the county pay.

The chief noted the equipment will be used for car wrecks, and the new set of Jaws of Life will make it easier to rescue a person should entrapment be a factor in a wreck.

He added the fire company had a set before the recent purchase, but it was about 10 years old.

“At the time that we had got those, they were top of the line, but the cars today they’re just becoming stronger … and the old ones just didn’t have what we needed to get the job done,” he said.

With the new equipment and the recent grant, Huffman said the fire company will be better equipped to help and serve the community.

“We can do a lot more to help people without having to wait for other departments to come and help us,” he said.