NORTH ARLINGTON –
North Arlington’s Volunteer Fire Department will be the beneficiary of new air packs, thanks largely to the snagging of a federal Assistance to Firefighters grant, provided through the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Mayor Peter Massa said the borough has been awarded a $305,000 grant thanks to the efforts of Rep. Bill Pascrell (D- 9th District).
That grant will be matched by a $15,000 contribution by the borough, Massa said.
Councilman Peter Norcia credited Volunteer Fire Chief Mark Zidiak with drafting the application for funding to replace self-contained breathing apparatus worn by the volunteers.
Although the existing packs – which have a lifespan of about 15 years – aren’t due for replacement until 2018, many can now be replaced at an earlier time, officials explained.
Borough spokesman Thom Ammirato said that although it’s likely that the government would be updating the specifications for the oxygen packs in the near future, North Arlington will get a “longer lead time” before switching over to the newest models.
Ammirato said the borough would be acquiring 40 of the new Scott Air-Packs, refurbishing 13 of the old ones, and trading in 13 others.