KINGSPORT, Tenn. (WJHL) – The Kingsport Fire Department (KFD) will soon be getting some new tools.
According to a release from the City of Kingsport, the department has been able to purchase new equipment through funds from the American Rescue Plan Act. Some of the items purchased include 60 new self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA), bunker gear and thermal cameras.
$465,000 of the total $760,000 in funds went to the purchase of the SCBA. Those systems are expected to arrive Thursday, the city reports.
“These will take care of all of our frontline firefighters and the remaining SCBA to be replaced would be included in the upcoming capital projects list,” Fire Chief Scott Boyd said. “The older ones were not failing. They had just hit their 10 to 15 year lifespan.”
The apparatus tanks hold about 20-30 minutes worth of oxygen and are worn by fire crews while they are engaged with flames.
The remainder of the funds were spent buying new bunker gear, which includes pants, coats and helmets. In addition, the KFD will also receive new cardiac monitors, thermal cameras and hose packs.
“All of this equipment was in our budget last year, but it got cut due to COVID,” Boyd said. “Through the use of the ARPA funds, we’ve been able to go back and fulfill these requests. We’re thankful we’re able to do that for our firefighters and the citizens of Kingsport.”