Globe Local

REGION

Grants will help region’s firefighters clean their gear

Firefighters in 75 communities — including Braintree, Bridgewater, Carver, Duxbury, Halifax, Hingham, Kingston, Rockland, Scituate, and Whitman — will be a little safer thanks to $420,000 in grants awarded by the state to buy machines that clean smoke and toxic chemicals from their firefighting gear.

The Baker administration announced the grants in late February, saying in a statement that the goal was to reduce exposure to cancer-causing chemicals left on firefighters’ gear.

“Firefighters take significant risks each and every time they put their gear on and respond to an emergency,” Governor Charlie Baker said in the statement. “One way that we can protect them and show our appreciation for their dedicated service is to provide these machines to ensure their gear is clean at the start of every emergency.”

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Bridgewater Fire Chief Thomas Levy said his department was grateful for his department’s $6,449 grant. “Occupational cancer is one of the serious long-term effects of an already dangerous job. This new machine will help us protect our firefighters for many years to come,” he said.

Johanna Seltz can be reached at [email protected]