Parkdale receives $66K for fire ops


News staff writer

August 19, 2006

Parkdale Rural Fire Protection District has new outfits on the way.

Both turnouts and wildland firefighting clothes will be ordered with a $66,001 grant from the Department of Homeland Security. The Parkdale Fire department’s officer, Richard Anderson, said the grant will also pay for a multi-gas detector for the department.

“The funds provided by this grant help to purchase important safety equipment for the district,” he said.

Anderson said the department had applied for the grant in 2005 but was turned down. He said it was a surprise but a welcome one to hear the grant would be funded after all.

Congressman Greg Walden announced the grant last week as part of the DHS assistance to firefighters grant program.

“Investing in fire prevention efforts is crucial to protecting people, homes, businesses and the environment from destruction that can be caused by fire,” Walden said. “I congratulate the district on this news.”

A reminder of how important the turnouts are to the 40-member force came at Tuesday night’s drill session as smoke from the Mount Hood Fire complex could be seen in the distance. If residences and businesses in the Cooper Spur vicinity are threatened, Parkdale RFPD will be called upon to defend those structures.

The 40-member volunteer cadre began the practice with an update from Assistant Fire Chief Rod Blumenthal.

“With Cooper Spur, from now on if we have a 9-1-1 call, we have to check in with IC (Incident Command) on the mountain before we go up,” he said. The firefighters then split up into four-man groups to practice their skills in engine and emergency medical services exercises.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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