For Immediate Release Contact: Tom Schneider
August 15, 2011 Fire Chief
Red Wing Fire Department
Red Wing Fire Department Donates Used Equipment
(August 15, 2011, Red Wing, Minn.) - On August 12th the Red Wing Fire Department donated approximately 40 used structural firefighting gear sets and 12 used Self Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA) to the International Fire Relief Mission (IFRM).
IFRM is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization based in Lindstrom Minnesota whose mission is to collect donated new and used fire and EMS equipment, deliver it to fire departments in developing nations and educate members of those fire departments on the equipment's safe and proper use. IFRM is a nonreligious, nonpolitical group dedicated to saving firefighter and civilian lives. IFRM members do not draw a salary and all of the money raised is used to fulfilling the group's mission. IFRM was formed in 2007 by retired emergency-response professionals. The equipment IFRM collects is donated by fire departments across the United States, with most of it coming from fire departments in Minnesota. The majority of the equipment donated is used firefighter turnout gear, aircraft rescue and firefighting gear, and SCBA air packs and masks. IFRM also collects first responder equipment such as AED units and CPR training dummies.
Many fire departments outside the country don't have the quality or quantity of equipment necessary to carry out their desired mission. Although this gear no longer meets U.S. standards, it has useful life left in it. It seems unthinkable that these firefighters have never had items as simple as boots and gloves, let alone full personal protective equipment (PPE). Because of this recycling effort, these firefighters have a much greater chance of avoiding life-threatening injuries.