Excerpts from the Dailychronicle.com:

A $1,000 grant from the Allstate Foundation will help the Sycamore Fire Department’s command officers better assess potential structure fires. The funds bought small thermal imaging cameras for the three command officers, who will use the cameras to determine the warmer areas of suspected structure fires and help identify the extension of fire in walls or void spaces.

Fire Chief Peter Polarek said the cameras are about the size of a cellphone, and while they don’t boast the features of larger cameras they’ve had for many years, they can help quickly scope out situations. Even in an event where there’s no fire, but smoke, it can help officers figure out the extent of heat within the walls without tearing out those walls.

The Allstate Foundation awards $1,000 grants to nonprofit organizations based on the volunteerism of Allstate agency owners.

The foundation gave $36 million to nonprofits across the nation and volunteered more than 250,000 hours and since it was founded in 1952 has contributed more than $400 million, the release said.