$95K grant helps equip Ala. FFs with mayday-focused technology
Anniston firefighters will have LUNAR devices added to their gear to enhance safety and communication
By Brian Graves
The Anniston Star
ANNISTON, Ala. — The Department of Homeland Security has awarded the Anniston Fire Department a grant that will improve the local department’s ability to carry out search-and-rescue missions in hazardous settings.
The $95,353.63 Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) will enable AFD to buy 36 state-of-the-art LUNAR devices — wireless, handheld search and rescue tools that incorporate cutting-edge technologies, including firefighter-to-firefighter ranging, edge detection, enhanced thermal imaging, and cloud connectivity to FireGrid, a platform used by firefighters to transmit data to team members on-scene and remote. The devices should arrive within a month, Anniston Fire Chief Jeff Waldrep said.
Using embedded Bluetooth technology, LUNAR seamlessly connects to firefighters’ safety apparatuses, providing a continuous stream of vital information. Firefighters can access critical data such as estimated air pressure, time remaining and battery life on-screen.
The integration of LUNAR with the G1 SCBA (Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus) represents a significant advancement in firefighter safety. By utilizing embedded Bluetooth technology, LUNAR and the G1 SCBA establish a constant flow of information, enabling real-time data sharing with Local Incident Command and Remote Monitoring.
This connectivity provides enhanced visibility of personnel and incidents, empowering confident decision-making.
Waldrep expressed his enthusiasm about the grant’s effect.
“This technological advancement allows for greater connectivity and collaboration between incident command, our firefighters and their equipment, ultimately ensuring increased safety in structural fires and other emergency situations where navigation, visibility, or communication can be difficult,” Waldrep said. “This new technology will revolutionize trail rescues, enhance the monitoring of our brave men and women, and revolutionize many other aspects of our operations.”
LUNAR is an acronym well known in all firefighter training because it helps someone making a mayday call remember the most important elements to tell rescuers: Location, Unit, Name, Assignment, Air status and Resources needed.
More information about the City of Anniston Fire Department and its initiatives is available at www.annistonal.gov/fire-department.