Chelsea Fire Purchases Two Gear Extractors With State Grant

The Chelsea Fire Department is replacing two gear extractors through a $25,000 grant from the state Firefighter Safety Equipment Grant Program, according to Chief Len Albanese.

The grant program enables fire departments to purchase a variety of equipment that will make firefighters’ jobs safer. “Our communities and families depend on firefighters in difficult and dangerous moments,” said Gov. Charlie Baker. “This program is an opportunity to show our deep appreciation for their work by ensuring they have the tools they need to stay safe and healthy.”

Chief Albanese said the gear extractors “are basically an industrial washing machine that decontaminates fire gear after it is used at working incidents.”

Albanese said the new gear extractors will be installed at two of Chelsea’s three fire stations. “We plan on replacing the other one through our own budget,” said Albanese.

The chief said the Fire Department had an extremely busy year that was complicated by the continuing pandemic. 

“We’re just waiting, like everybody else, for this COVID thing to pass – it affects everything we do,” said Albanese. “We’re busy enough to begin with, without having all those headaches, but we’re doing okay.”

Centerville-Osterville-Marston Mills Fire Chief Michael Winn, president of the Fire Chiefs Association of Massachusetts, thanked the Baker-Polito Administration for the funding ($5 million in grants) to 306 departments across the state.

“The job of the modern firefighter takes countless forms,” said Winn. “At any given moment, they could be asked to respond to a fire, a hazardous materials leak, a car accident, or a medical call. Equipping them for safety in each of these situations is a significant financial burden for every department. We are so thankful that funding was made available to help with this challenge, especially at a time when so many departments are facing budget issues due to COVID-19.”

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