Enbridge Inc., a Canadian fossil fuel delivery company, has given the Grand Island Volunteer Fire Department an $8,000 grant to purchase an extractor drying cabinet that will be used to remove carcinogens from firefighters' gear.
"At one time, wearing a sooty, dirty helmet might have been considered the cool thing to do, almost like a battle scar," said Grand Island Deputy Fire Chief Mark Sadkowksi. But he said studies of the danger of carcinogens have prompted the fire department to take precautions, especially since firefighters are carrying their dirty equipment around in their cars.
The new dryer is a more powerful version of a commercial-grade washer and dryer and it will draw contaminants out of the clothing.
Enbridge awards grants to local first response emergency services, investing $10.7 million since 2002.