Albemarle County Fire Rescue has been awarded a $7.1 million Federal Emergency Management Agency Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response grant to hire, train and deploy 30 full-time firefighters.
Pending acceptance of the grant, 14 of the 30 grant-funded positions will be used to implement 24/7 coverage in the southern portion of the county.
The other 16 positions will staff a ladder truck based at the Monticello Station. This unit will be staffed with specially trained personnel to address more complex incidents that arise in our community including water and technical rescues.
FEMA created the SAFER grant to provide funding directly to fire departments to help increase or maintain the number of trained, front-line firefighters available in their communities.
“This grant allows Albemarle County to take a noteworthy step forward in fulfilling our commitment to the safety and well-being of our community,” said Albemarle County Board of Supervisors Chair Donna Price. “We are grateful to FEMA for the grant award and to the County staff for their successful application in this competitive process as they continually seek opportunities to ensure we are providing quality services.”
ACFR has been actively recruiting throughout August to fill the positions.
“I want to thank the staff for their dedication and hard work which was instrumental in securing this significant funding opportunity,” added ACFR Fire Chief Dan Eggleston. “With the support from the Board of Supervisors and county leadership, our department is proactively identifying and addressing ways to deliver professional and consistent services to the people of Albemarle County.”
Beginning in January 2024, the new hires will attend a recruit school to receive the skills and knowledge needed for the job. Training will include emergency medical technician skills, firefighter survival, car seat installation, emergency vehicle operation and various other essential knowledge for success.