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Mohawk Valley Joint Fire district illuminates lighting issue

By DAVID HUTTON The Press-News Published: June 24, 2016 10:00 AM

SANDY TWP. SEmD The Mohawk Valley Joint Fire District will spend grant funds it recently received on scene lighting and personal lights for firefighters.

The district recently received a $10,000 grant from the Department of Commerce's Division of State Fire Marshal's Office.

"The scene and personal lighting is really needed," said Fire Chief Jim Marraccini.

The district will use the grant money to purchase six Rebel Scout lights that can be mounted on trucks to illuminate emergency scenes for $3,450. It also will purchase 30 lights that can be placed on firefighters' helmets for $3,300, 30 body-mounted lights and chargers for $3,660 and lithium battery packs for $120.

The board approved an additional $1,000 to cover the purchase price over the $10,000 grant and possible shipping costs.

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"It really is like we are getting $10,000 in lighting equipment for $470," Marraccini said.

Marraccini also noted that all of the district's air bottles are past due for a hydro test.

"We can't get these bottles filled because they are outdated," he said.

The district agreed to spend $170 to have 10 bottles tested.

The hydrostatic test checks the bottles for strength and leaks.

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"If we get the ASGA grant, we will get all new bottles," Marraccini added. "I don't want to invest a lot of money on these bottles."

Board member Bruce Weisburn noted that having 10 bottles with up-to-date testing isn't a lot when you have an average of seven firefighters responding to calls.

"We really might want to consider having 10 more tested," he said.

The board also learned that a member who has not participated in any training or runs with the district has renewed their state certification in the district's name.

Marraccini asked board member John McCall if he could do some research to see if the person did indeed use the district's name.

Assistant Fire Chief Tom Ely noted that a firefighter has to be current as a part of the district's bylaws.

The board agreed to have McCall, who is an attorney, look into the situation.

"If I have any questions, I would like the authority to call our legal counsel," he noted, to which the rest of the board agreed.

In other business, the board:

/ AGREED to reimburse firefighter John Whitacre $58 for chargers.

/ LEARNED the district received more than $3,000 for a homestead rollback and $63.83 from River Valley Paper.

/ HEARD that the district's best price for tires for the tanker would be with state purchasing. The district will find out what it needs to do to be able to participate in state purchasing.

/ HEARD that work to replace valves on Engine 111 should be completed in about two weeks.

/ HEARD the district has had 48 calls through June 16.

The next meeting of the Mohawk Valley Joint Fire District is at 7:30 p.m. July 7 at the fire station, located at 8285 Waynesburg Drive.


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