APCO helps DRFD secure thermal camera

Published 6:45 pm Friday, May 4, 2012

After nearly two years of seeking funding, the Demopolis Fire and Rescue Department will finally be able to get its own thermal imaging camera. Patience has ultimately paid off for the DFRD as a recent contribution from Alabama Power’s Greene County Steam Plant has made it possible for the department to purchase two thermal imaging cameras.

“We’ve been doing quite a bit of training for Alabama Power. In order to make it safe for them and throughout our city, we asked them if they would be willing to purchase two thermal imaging cameras,” Demopolis Fire and Rescue Department Chief Ronnie Few said of what led up to the $20,268 check from Alabama Power.

The department had previously borrowed a camera to assess its capabilities and get its firefighters familiar with the equipment.

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“Not only does it enhance our ability to be safe within buildings, this takes our fire service to another level,” Few said. “It’s something all other departments have moved to and now we have moved toward being safer and more efficient in our fire ground operations.”

Few also pointed out that the department’s ownership of the cameras could ultimately prove beneficial for Alabama Power as the DFRD is the only full-time department within a 60-mile radius of the Greene County Steam Plant.

“They are using thermal imaging inside their buildings as well,” Few said of the plant. “That gives us the ability to come in pretty quickly. Not that I don’t value volunteer fire departments, but I think the steam plant understands they need somebody quickly when they do need somebody.”

Few said the department is grateful to Alabama Power for its generous contributions to the welfare of the city of Demopolis.