Parkdale receives $66K for fire ops

By SUE RYAN

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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