Today, Congressman Rob Andrews announced that the Bellmawr Fire Department will receive a total of $33,995 from the federal government to purchase new life-saving equipment. The borough will use the grant to replace and update its equipment known as the "jaws of life," an apparatus that fire departments use to free victims trapped in vehicles following an accident or fire.
Awarded through FEMA's Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) program, these funds are designed to help communities meet their emergency response needs without placing an additional burden on their local budget. The AFG program awards over $337 million annually to fire departments and EMS organizations nationwide as an effort to improve public safety and responsiveness in times of emergency.
"With this money, Bellmawr firefighters will have the best equipment available to rescue fire victims from burning vehicles," said Congressman Andrews. "As communities continue to face difficult budget decisions, this grant will allow Bellmawr to purchase the tools needed to protect its residents and first responders without having to make additional cuts or raise taxes on families."
"This federal money will allow us to better serve the community as well as motorists who travel along the interstate highways in Bellmawr," said Bellmawr Fire Department Chief James Burleigh.
AFG grants are awarded on a competitive basis that evaluates a department's financial needs, as well as the extent in which an application aligns with the priorities and goals of the program.