KATY MAGAZINE NEWS - Katy, TX
October 3, 2017
The Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation will celebrate a grant for rescue boats and life-saving equipment being donated to public safety organizations in East Texas with a presentation and short demonstration in Katy.
Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation is celebrating $149,218 worth of life-saving equipment grants awarded to six local public safety organizations, including one organization that utilized their equipment in Hurricane Harvey rescue efforts. A press event will take place at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 4 at the Gardens at Westgreen Firehouse Subs restaurant located at 20900 Katy Freeway, Katy, Texas 77449. Rescue boat demonstration to follow off-site at a nearby location.
Just in time... Last month, East Texas experienced catastrophic flooding and historic destruction from the category three hurricane that battered the region with more than 40 inches of rain in some areas. Just days before the 12th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, Harvey devastated thousands of homes and left more than 80 dead in its path. Fortunately, one of the grant recipients, Harris County Emergency Services District No. 48 Fire-EMS (HCESD), received their awarded rescue boats before Harvey made landfall, which aided in the successful recovery of more than 200 stranded civilians.
Hundreds rescued from catastrophe “The Foundation grant for two rescue boats and equipment couldn’t have come at a more perfect time,” said HCESD Chief Jeff Hevey. “We were able to begin rescues before Harvey affected the immediate area and prior to state and federal assets being available. The equipment proved to be invaluable to not only our community, but neighboring communities as well. We were able to help rescue hundreds of residents over the catastrophic multi-day event.”
The following departments are receiving equipment, which will be on display and demonstrated at the event.
More than just boats In addition to the rescue boats, Harris County Emergency Services District No. 48 Fire-EMS (HCESD) also received a transport trailer and personal water safety equipment, including personal flotation devices, throw ropes, whistles and knifes, worth a combined $22,372. The awarded equipment tools are necessary for successful water rescues. In the past 14 months, HCESD 48 has responded to 12 water rescue emergencies.
Richmond Fire Department also received a rescue boat with trailer and accessories valued at $27,853. The awarded boat will replace an old, damaged boat beyond its serviceable years.
Cove Fire and Rescue received 10 sets of turnout gear valued at $23,839. The awarded gear, which includes pants, coats, suspenders, helmets, boots, gloves, hoods and storage bags will replace old, damaged gear, allowing firefighters to provide safe and efficient services to their community. A majority of the gear being replaced is approaching 10 years in service, which ensures the department will remain in compliance with the National Fire Protection Association’s (NFPA) recommended 10-year retirement for protective gear.
Atascocita Fire Department received a respiratory fit tester valued at $13,265. The awarded equipment will allow the department to administer in-house respiratory fit tests, ensuring firefighters maintain a sufficient seal on their respirator and that they are fit for duty. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) states that respiratory fit testing must be done prior to initial respiratory use, whenever a different respirator is worn and at least annually thereafter.
City of Sugar Land received 25 automated external defibrillators (AEDs) valued at $42,012. The awarded AEDs will be placed into police cruisers and in all public city facilities to help ensure officers and staff, as well as bystanders are prepared to provide medical assistance if an individual goes into cardiac arrest while waiting for medical assistance to arrive. Studies from the American Heart Association show use of an AED within three to five minutes of a victim’s heart stopping improves odds of survival by nearly 70 percent.
Houston Fire Department received 143 protective firefighter hoods valued at $19,877. The awarded hoods will replace outdated gear, helping ensure firefighters are protected in the line of duty and are able to deliver efficient fire services to their community. “The Foundation was born in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina,” said Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation Executive Director Robin Peters. “Twelve years later, it’s humbling to see the impact our Foundation has made and to actually hear how we’re helping save lives in everyday emergencies, as well as during natural disasters.” Who will be there
Attendees include local first responders, as well as Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation Executive Director Robin Peters, Firehouse Subs Area Representative Mike McCown and Firehouse Subs Franchisees Taha Mohamed, Bradley Watkins and Kim Helms.
About the organization
Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation was founded in 2005 in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, when Firehouse Subs co-founders, Chris Sorensen and Robin Sorensen, traveled to Mississippi where they provided food to first responders and survivors. As they traveled back to Florida, they knew they could do more and Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation was born with the mission of providing funding, life-saving equipment and educational opportunities to first responders and public safety organizations. Since its inception, the non-profit organization has granted more than $28 million to hometown heroes in 46 states, Puerto Rico and Canada, including more than $1.9 million in Texas. Each restaurant recycles leftover, five-gallon buckets, available to guests for a $2 donation to the Foundation. Donation canisters on register counters collect spare change, while the Round Up Program allows guests to “round up” their bill to the nearest dollar. Grant allocations are made possible thanks to the overwhelming support of Firehouse Subs restaurants and generous donors.