Fire departments awarded federal grants to hire firefighters

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) -- The state's congressional delegation says fire departments in Rhode Island are getting $3.8 million in federal funding to hire new firefighters.

The delegation says the money will help the Cumberland, Saylesville, Smithfield and Woonsocket fire departments hire and train a total of 28 new firefighters. The West Warwick Fire Department is getting nearly $7,000 for a new thermal imaging camera.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency awarded the grants. These grants are designed to enhance local fire departments' abilities to comply with staffing, response, equipment and operational standards established by the National Fire Protection Association.

Smithfield and Woonsocket are getting most of the grant money. Smithfield is hiring 13 new firefighters. Woonsocket is hiring 12.

The delegation says the funding will help ensure the departments are well-staffed to protect their communities.

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