RUSSELLVILLE - Since 2003, when the Russellville-Lohman Fire Protection District celebrated its 50th anniversary and became a tax-supported entity, it has continued to improve equipment and training for the volunteers.
Turnout gear is one of the most important replacements. The boots, pants, coat, glove, helmet and mask are heat-resistant and essential to a volunteer's safety while fighting a fire.
The newest turnout gear, acquired through a federal grant, is lighter, more durable and more comfortable, said Fire Chief Melvin Stubinger.
That grant also allowed the district to buy additional breathing machines. And they now have special packs to assist in firemen rescue.