West Lake Limestone VFD receives $20,000 grant for new apparatus
THORNTON, Texas ¾ West Lake Limestone Volunteer Fire Department accepted a $20,000 grant from the Rural Volunteer Fire Department Assistance Program. The grant was used to purchase a slip-on unit that was installed onto a 5-ton excess military truck received through the Department of Defense Firefighter Property Program (DoD FFP), both programs administered by Texas A&M Forest Service.
“The truck and the slip-on unit are replacing an older, maintenance troubled truck that the department built many years ago,” said West Lake Limestone VFD Fire Chief Allen McWhirter. “The new truck will take the older truck’s number. We appreciate having a vehicle equipped with a slip-on unit that includes a 500-gallon water tank and has foam capability.”
A slip-on unit is designed to become a fast, initial-attack firefighting unit. It is used in wildland firefighting as well as structure and auto fires and is a complete, self-contained firefighting apparatus designed for a pickup truck or custom-built vehicle platform.
According to McWhirter, the primary use of this truck will be to knock down grass fires in their growing wildland interface, farming and ranching community.
“Our department is grateful for the funding that is available to us through the local Emergency Service District and Texas A&M Forest Service,” said McWhirter. “Texas A&M Forest Service provided the truck and the $20,000 grant and ESD #2 provided funding to complete the response truck by adding radios, emergency lighting, LED scene lights and bumper sprayers.”
The department will receive training on driving and operating a military vehicle and looks forward to the increased capacity to protect life and property in the community and 100-square-mile protection area.
Committed individuals interested in dedicating time as a volunteer may contact Fire Chief McWhirter at the fire department, (254) 729-0165.
For more information on programs offered by Texas A&M Forest Service, please visit http://texasfd.com.