Chelsea Fire receives $5,000 grant

Published 11:29 am Monday, December 3, 2012

Chelsea Firefighters Chris Kizziah and Colby Faulkner practice using the department’s new airbags to lift an overturned vehicle off mannequin Randy. (Reporter photo/Christine Boatwright)


CHELSEA – Chelsea Fire and Rescue recently received a $5,000 grant for new airbags from the Firefighters Support Foundation.

The department’s southern coverage provides mutual aid with Pelham from Chelsea Fire Station 32 off Shelby County 69, and the new airbags will assist in extrication scenarios down the Shelby County 11 corridor, according Chelsea Firefighter Chris Kizziah.

“The airbags are universal at what they can be used for,” Kizziah said.

During training at the Chelsea Fire Station off Shelby County 51, the firefighters trained with the new airbags, simulating an overturned vehicle on a victim.

“You have to be extra careful on how you extricate,” Kizziah said. “There’s not stabilization when you’re working under a vehicle. You have to be conscientious of where the person is.”

A complete set of extrication equipment, which includes struts to stabilize the vehicle, airbags and manifold to lift the vehicle and cutters and spreaders to dismantle the vehicle, costs about $33,000, Kizziah said.

The department is pursuing additional grant money for equipment, such as an off-road, all-terrain vehicle to assist in locating residents in the woods.