By John Benson
The Plain Dealer, Cleveland
SEVEN HILLS, Ohio — The Seven Hills Fire Department was recently awarded an $11,970 Workers’ Compensation Firefighter Exposure to Environmental Elements Grant to purchase 84 Gore particulate hoods and 84 Pro-Tech fusion gloves.
As part of the grant, the city is responsible for $2,394 of the total $14,364 expenditure.
“It’s great news for the city of Seven Hills,” Seven Hill City Council President Anthony D. Biasiotta said. “Firefighter Joe Simerale put in for the grant earlier this year. He did the research after discovering our firefighter Bob Perko, who also is the chief for University Hospitals, got the grant earlier in the year (for the hospital system).
“It frees up almost $12,000 of taxpayer money that can be used for other firefighting supplies or expenditures in general.”
Simerale said the hoods provide protection against cancer-causing particulates often experienced in fires. The goal is to provide each of the 42 Seven Hills firefighters with two sets of hoods and gloves allowing them to attend to multiple fires without concern.
“We’re happy that we were able to come together with the city for funding the additional cost,” Simerale said. “Right now, we’re fitting everybody. We hope to get the order in and have them by the end of the month.”
Councilman At-Large Pat Elliott added, “I know Joe works hard to try to get some of the new equipment and also to bring it to our attention because a lot of times, being without a chief right now, we don’t know what’s going on.”
©2019 The Plain Dealer, Cleveland