Colbert County Commission gives EMA approval to purchase $16,000 worth of PPE for volunteer fire departments

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COLBERT COUNTY, Ala. — The world is in the middle of a pandemic and personal protective equipment like face masks can be a hassle to find. This can be problematic for first responders who are constantly on the frontlines.

Thanks to the Colbert County Commission, all fourteen volunteer fire departments across the county won’t have that struggle. They gave the Colbert County EMA approval to purchase $16,000 worth PPE.

“Where that stemmed from is a few grants that we applied for,” said EMA Deputy Director Jody Hitt. “The county commission has stepped up and matched that grant of their own monies to help out the volunteer firemen.”

With those funds, the EMA has been able to provide gloves, surgical masks, N-95 masks, and hand sanitizer. Hitt said the need for this life-saving equipment was immediate.

“We plan and prepare for everything but a pandemic virus,” Hitt said. “We had some equipment on board but that went through within three weeks or so.”

Because Alabama is currently under a state of emergency, the funds the county commission provided could be reimbursed through FEMA.

Hitt said having this PPE on hand will better prepare the volunteer fire departments in the event that a second wave of COVID-19 occurs.