Cookeville Fire Department will receive some eight hazardous gas meters through the Upper Cumberland Region of Homeland Security.
Paramedic Reserve Engineer Joey Smith said that firefighters will use the tools in a variety of emergency situations, including structure fires, hazardous material emergencies, and leak detections.
“They draw in ambient air in our atmosphere and in our environment that we’re in at the time,” Smith said. “And it detects what gases are present, and it gives us real-time meter readings.”
Smith said that there are seven standard meters and one high-tech reader that can also read chemicals in the area. He said that the high-tech readers can cost up to $4,000 or $5,000.
Smith said that because tools like these are used in many situations, it’s important to have them on hand.
“Safety is always our top priority from the general population to every member of our department,” Smith said. “These monitors give us real-time readings from the gas concentrations that are in our environment or the situations we’re dealing with, and it just helps to keep everybody safe.”
Chief Benton Young said that the department has been in possession of the monitors for about a week. He said that they will begin using them once they receive cases.