Rural Fire Departments to Purchase Farm Rescue Equipment

Richfield Rural Fire Department/FB

Farm Technology Days Grants Benefit Community

A $15,000 Wood County Farm Technology Days grant will allow rural fire departments to purchase farm rescue equipment.

Richfield Rural Fire Department, Arpin Volunteer Fire and Rescue, Hewitt Area Volunteer Fire Department, Pittsville Fire Company and Vesper Volunteer Fire Department were the recipients of the grant. A total of $405,317 is being back to the community through the program.

The five departments collaborated with the National Farm Medicine Center to develop a brand-new Farm Safety and Rescue area for the 2018 show.

“It was not by chance these agencies came together for this event. These same departments had and continue to work together on large incidents all of the time,” said Fire Chief Josh Sabo, Richfield Rural Fire Department. Because of a struggle to find employees to fill positions, the departments partner up for complex calls and for a decade have trained jointly for specialized rescues.

The grant will be used to purchase rescue tools for responding to farm accidents and perform mandatory training. It will fund a grain bin coffer dam and auger for grain bin entrapments, large low pressure air bags to lift tractors and other objects in unstable soil, ropes and related hardware used in elevated structures or bins that secure rescuers and patients, and high strength stabilization jacks and cargo strapping to stabilize large equipment that needs to be lifted.

“This equipment can also be used in other scenarios but is mandatory for the agricultural rescue scene. The equipment is spread out between the five agencies in Central Wood County and is brought together as needed with a multi-agency response, something we do frequently,” said Sabo.

A provision of the grant is to make the equipment available to other Wood County agencies and neighboring counties upon request for emergency response or training purposes.

“Our five departments are very grateful to the FTD selection committee for choosing this grant as one that provides a great worth to the farm community and to our personnel,” said Sabo.