KINGSVILLE TOWNSHIP — The fire department has been awarded a grant to purchase new gear to protect firefighters from harmful chemicals.

The grant, from the Ohio Bureau of Workers Compensation, will see the township receive just under $14,000 for new hoods, gloves and a heavy-duty washing machine. The grant is intended to reduce firefighters’ exposure to dangerous environmental elements, according to the Bureau of Workers Compensation.

Fifteen sets of gloves and hoods will be purchased, along with an industrial washing machine. The grant will also pay for extending electrical lines to the washer, according to the letter announcing the grant.

Other fire departments in the area have also received the grant, including Conneaut.

“As trustees, we would like to thank Chief Sopko for his successful effort in acquiring this grant. In his short time with the department, Chief Sopko has worked with the Kingsville Township Fire Department Boosters who generously contributed $11,789.98 toward new turnout gear and he has now acquired the means to keep this gear in good condition and clean of dangerous carcinogens,“ Trustee Jim Branch said in an email announcing the grant.

“We are thankful for his commitment to protecting our dedicated fire and EMS staff. This now allows the township to use the money that has been saved here for other important equipment like updated SCBA gear.”

The township passed a 2.5 mills fire and EMS renewal levy Tuesday.

“I would like to thank the residents of Kingsville for approving our recent 2.5 mill fire and EMS levy and we will continue to aggressively pursue these types of grant opportunities to use along with taxpayer dollars, like the levy, to provide the best fire and EMS service we can,” Branch said.

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