Chattanooga Fire Department Seeks Grant for Active Shooter Equipment and Training

The Chattanooga Fire Department is looking to secure some Department of Homeland Security money for additional protective vests and active-shooter training for its personnel.

“Looking at the events of the last year, from [the] July 16 terrorism event in Chattanooga, the terrorist event in San Bernardino in December, the terrorist event in Orlando [last] month and the execution event [not classified as terrorism yet] in Dallas last week, the fire department will be one of the first additional first response units to arrive to assist with patient medical care,” Assistant Chief Danny Hague of the department’s Special Operations Division wrote in an email.

In February, the department gave special awards to recognize the service of several chiefs, firefighters and a civilian member of fleet maintenance during and following the July 16 shootings last year that left five service members and the shooter dead.

On Tuesday, the City Council will vote whether to authorize the fire department to seek a $133,000 Countering Violent Extremism grant.

If awarded, the department will use $83,000 for at least 30 sets of protective gear and mass casualty medical supplies and $50,000 for active-shooter response training, Hague said.

“When another event occurs, we want the firefighters to have as much protection as possible,” he said.

Councilman Chip Henderson, chairman of the council’s Public Safety Committee, said in a phone interview he and his colleagues have supported purchases of protective gear for the fire department in the past and would continue to support the city’s firefighters.

The grant application period opened July 6 and ends Sept. 6, according to the Department of Homeland Security website.

The department proposes to award $10 million through the CVE grant program to 60 recipients and will announce the awards in December. Award amounts range between $20,000 and $1.5 million. Applicants do not have to share or match grant costs.

The program commits $7 million towards government efforts focused on developing resilience, training and engagement and managing intervention activities; $3 million goes towards capacity and programming for non-profit organizations and institutions of higher education that seek to challenge violent extremism.

Contact staff writer Paul Leach at 423-757-6481 or Follow him on Twitter @pleach_tfp.



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