COLUMBIA — The Columbia Fire Department was recently awarded a $40,000 grant for additional hazardous materials training.
Department wide training is ongoing and will continue into next week. Later this month, specialized classes in Hazmat response and safety will be offered to up to 24 department members.
Brad Frazier, President of the Columbia Professional Fire Fighters Local 1055, worked with the department to secure funding from the International Association of Fire Fighters and federal emergency agencies. The grant application was submitted in late May.
“We hoped we’d get something, but we got everything we asked for," Frazier said. “Enhanced Hazmat training will help make us a better department and a safer community.”
This is the first IAFF grant the department has received, but more applications might come in the future.
All firefighters in the department are required to have some level of Hazmat training, but because of Columbia’s population and sensitive locations such as stadiums, more training is always welcome, Frazier said.