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ELFD awarded new jaws of life through grant

Morning Journal/Liz Lehman East Liverpool firefighters practice using new jaws of life in a Monday demonstration. The equipment was purchased through a grant for just under $40,000 from Firehouse Subs.

EAST LIVERPOOL — The East Liverpool Fire Department was recently awarded a $39,253 grant which they used to purchase new extrication equipment, also known as the jaws of life. The department hosted a public demonstration/training session Monday by the St. Clair Avenue station where members of the department were able to try out the new equipment by cutting open cars.

East Liverpool Fire Chief William Jones accepted a check from Firehouse Subs franchise business consultant Matt Liggett at the demonstration. Jones said on average, extrication equipment is used about five to eight times a year. He said the department would not have been able to make the purchase without the donation. “The equipment we have now was purchased before I was hired and that was over 31 years ago, so the tools are roughly 35 to 40 years old,” Jones said.

He said the old tools used a generator which could make them difficult to use. “You have to lug that power unit around and connect hoses to it, then you connect the tools to the hoses,” he said. “The hoses actually become a trip hazard. With these new battery-operated tools, they’re great for the guys. They’re lighter weight. They don’t have to use the power unit anymore. The tools are more mobile. They can go places that we couldn’t take the other jaws.”

Liggett said the Firehouse Public Safety Foundation grant was supported by donations collected at all the Firehouse Sub restaurants. “Either through rounding up your change, donating in our canister or selling our Firehouse pickle buckets, all that money goes into the foundation where the grant is then looked at and approved for different departments and first responders,” Liggett said.

Firehouse Subs is based out of Jacksonville, Fla. The closest locations are in Boardman, Beaver or Robinson. On April 5 the foundation also awarded Hanover Township Volunteer Fire Association $19,750 for hoses, nozzles, ground monitor and accessories.

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