Do you remember when central Ohio was buried under a foot of snow in early March of this year? The townships and municipalities across the state certainly do because the thousands dropped on snow removal and clean-up.
"Around $5,600 was spent on the cost for different categories such as labor, clean up materials and the upkeep of equipment," said Pleasant Township Chairman Keith Goldhardt.
At the May 27 Pleasant Township board of trustees meeting, it was announced that financial assistance is on the way.
"We met with the people from FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) and they said they would pay 75 percent of the cost, so we’ll be collecting approximately $4,200," said Jeff Karn, superintendent of the township’s road department.
When Governor Ted Strickland declared a state of emergency for the March 7-9 snowfall, the United States Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Ohio Emergency Management Agency (Ohio EMA) partnered together to help eligible townships and municipalities cover a portion of the cost.
"It’s great to be able to get money from FEMA," Goldhardt said. "It’s nice to know they came through for us."
During the two-day snowfall, there were six counties that were in a level three snow emergency, with 43 counties under a level two emergency.
The money will go toward buying new equipment and paying the wages of the road department employees.
Goldhardt said FEMA money cannot go towards the township’s general fund, and can only be used for the road department.
Rapid intervention team training
In June, the Grandview Heights Fire Division is holding a two-hour Rapid Intervention/Saving Yourself exercise at the old Big Bear warehouse at 770 West Goodale Ave. and they have invited all fire departments in Franklin County to participate in the training.
Pleasant Township Fire Chief Jay Noojin asked the board if he could send a few of his full-time firefighters to the facility to get more experience.
"Most of my firefighters have already done rapid intervention training with either the Columbus Fire Department or the Jackson Township Fire Department, but I would like them to have more training," he said.
Four drills will be included in the training. They are the RIT PAK Evolution, or Exercise; The Mayday Evolution the Denver Drill; and the Nance Drill. The Denver Drill and the Nance Drill were named after Engineer Mark Langvardt of the Denver Colorado Fire Department and Jim Nance of the Columbus Fire Department, respectively. Each firefighter lost their life by either becoming trapped in a confined area with a high windowsill (Mark Langvardt) or becoming trapped in the basement of a commercial structure after the floor collapsed from under him (Jim Nance.)
The Denver Drill teaches techniques for removing a firefighter from a confined area with a high windowsill and the Nance Drill teaches them a variety of ways using ropes and knots to pull a fallen fire fighter back up through a hold, and even lower a rescuer down to assist.
The training is part of an ongoing process that was started last year by a rapid intervention committee headed by Columbus Fire.