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The Collins Fire Department has been awarded $216,482 in federal funds to purchase 25 new sets of self-contained emergency breathing apparatus to replace its 20-year-old units, Sens. Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand announced.

“These new air packs are going to bring our equipment up to standard and ensure our firefighters are safe,” said Dave Duncan, vice president and treasurer of the Collins Fire District, which has 87 active volunteers. Duncan noted the grant from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program is more than the district’s annual budget of about $200,000 plus fundraising efforts.

The new equipment will include 50 air bottles, 25 face pieces and 25 air packs to replace apparatus obtained in the early 1990s.

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