Twenty-two Ohio fire departments will share $196,896 in grants from the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) under a program to protect firefighters from carcinogens and other harmful health hazards encountered by firefighters during their daily work activities.
The fire departments are receiving the funding under BWC’s Firefighter Exposure to Environmental Elements Grant Program, which helps departments purchase specialized washing machines, fire station exhaust systems and other safety gear designed to minimize exposure to toxic elements.
“We know residue collected on firefighters’ gear during a blaze can cause respiratory disease, cancer and other ailments, which is why BWC started this grant program in 2017,” said BWC Administrator/CEO Stephanie B. McCloud. “These dollars save lives and I’m proud BWC is doing its part to protect the first responders who put their lives on the line for us every day.”
Locally, the Paint Creek Joint EMS/Fire District in Highland County will receive $12,101.65 to purchase one extractor, 66 hoods and 30 gloves. Ross County's Franklin Township is getting $8,785 to purchase one extractor. Hamden Village in Vinton County will be awarded $9,261.20 to purchase one extractor.