Fire Department awarded grant

Published 11:07 am Wednesday, January 23, 2019

The Drakes Branch Volunteer Fire Department (DBVFD) recently received grant funding to purchase extrication equipment, according to a report from the Commonwealth Regional Council (CRC) and the fire department.

Officials from the CRC cited that Drakes Branch was awarded the funds from the Rescue Squads Assistance Fund (FSAF), which is also called the Emergency Medical Services Grants Program. According to information from the Virginia Department of Health (VDH), the program provides funding for nonprofit Emergency Medical Services (EMS) agencies and organizations.

DBVFD was notified about receiving the grant funding Jan. 1.

According to Drakes Branch Chief Kenny Tharpe, the funding will allow the department to purchase new extrication equipment.

The extrication equipment, also called the Jaws of Life, is used to remove people from vehicles after a vehicle accident.

The equipment is estimated to cost a little more than $20,000, Tharpe said.

He said the department is expected to receive the equipment approximately 30-60 days after Jan. 1.

Tharpe said the department was fortunate to have received the award. He estimated that the department’s current extrication equipment is approximately 25 or more years old.

“We definitely needed them,” Tharpe said.