It’s ironic that the men within are tasked with fighting fires, although they themselves aren’t equipped with potentially life-saving systems.
The Rockford Fire Department received a grant for $247,710 from FEMA, and the money will go to installing sprinkler systems in four of the stations.
The sprinkler systems are crucial in keeping both the firefighters, as well as the equipment, safe. With people in the stations twenty-four hours a day seven days a week, installing sprinklers has been a priority.
"We’ve been applying for grants to have our stations outfitted for probably the last three or four years, and we were fortunate enough to be awarded this time,” said Derek Bergsten, the Chief of the Rockford Fire Department.
The Rockford Fire Department knows first hand how valuable these protective measures are—especially after one of their own fire engines caught fire one night.
The fire happened in the middle of the night, and fortunately, the alarm and the sprinklers went off, suppressing the fire enough so that it didn’t spread to the rest of the station. The firefighters were then able to extinguish the remaining amount of fire.
Chief Bergsten says, "We had over 2 million dollars worth of equipment, and our personnel in that station.”
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