Excerpts from jg-tc.com:

The Mattoon Fire Department recently received a $200,000 federal grant that will enable it to replace all 30 of the aging air tank sets for the department’s firefighters. The Federal Emergency Management Agency awarded this grant through the Assistant to Firefighters program, and the grant was matched by $10,000 in city funding.

The grant funding arrived as one third of the department’s bottles are scheduled to retire at the beginning of 2019 and another third are set to expire at the beginning of 2020. Each new set of grant funded equipment will include two bottles, a harness, and a face mask. One feature of the new equipment will be a warning signal that indicates when 33 percent of the air supply is left, instead of the current signal at 25 percent.

In other matters, the department recently purchased a washing machine and a clothes drying cabinet for turnout gear with the help of a $15,700 small equipment grant from the Illinois State Fire Marshal’s Office. They installed the new cleaning equipment this week at the fire station annex building behind city hall.

The new equipment will enable firefighters to clean their own turnout gear on site without having to send it to a cleaning service. The washing machine can clean two sets of gear at a time.

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