Rhode Island fire departments sharing $5.5M in FEMA grants

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Nineteen Rhode Island fire departments are getting a total of $5.5 million in federal grants that can be used to buy new equipment and upgrade training to enhance public safety, the state’s congressional delegation said.

“These grants will help lift the budgetary burden on local governments and better protect the health and safety of the public and firefighters,” Sen. Jack Reed said in a statement Friday.

The Warwick Fire Department is getting the largest chunk of the grant money, including almost $900,000 for an aerial ladder truck and more than $100,000 for portable radio equipment.

The East Providence Fire Department is getting more than $800,000 for paramedic training.

The Newport Fire Department is receiving more than $400,000 for portable radio units, mobile repeaters, and associated communications equipment.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency grants are also going to departments and fire districts in Bristol; Central Falls; East Greenwich; Johnston; Lincoln; Narragansett; North Kingstown; Pascoag; Portsmouth; Providence; Prudence Island; the Rhode Island Firefighting Academy in Exeter; West Warwick; and Woonsocket.