The City of Beverly was recently awarded a $717,800 Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grant from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). This three year grant will allow the City of Beverly to hire additional firefighters. The Beverly Fire Department was one of seven departments statewide to be awarded a SAFER grant.
The SAFER program assists municipalities in improving local fire departments’ staffing and deployment capabilities so they may more effectively respond to emergencies. The SAFER grant was awarded to the Beverly Fire Department to increase the number of line firefighters. Appropriate staffing levels allow our fire personnel to adhere to the many safety codes, enforcements and standards. By hiring additional fire department staff, service levels, emergency response times and department capabilities will be improved and strengthened to adequately serve the nearly 41,000 residents in Beverly. This grant will help the Beverly Fire Department increase safety for our citizens.
“We’ll use this grant to hire four additional firefighters later this calendar year, which will help staff four fire trucks regularly. This will improve coverage when we have multiple calls and when fighting significant fires. I want to thank Fire Chief Paul Cotter, Deputy Chief Peter O’Connor and their team, along with our Director of Grants, Catherine Barrett, for doing such a fantastic job preparing this grant proposal. They always do great work on behalf of the people of Beverly, ” stated Beverly Mayor Michael Cahill.
Beverly Fire Chief Paul Cotter commented “For years, firefighters have only been able to staff Engine 1 at Headquarters occasionally, when staffing allowed. With the help of a Federal Staffing for Adequate Response grant from the Federal Emergency Management Administration, Beverly Fire will be able to add four new firefighters, the department will then be able to increase the number of responders on duty at any given time from 10 to 13. The change will help to keep Engine 1 in service full time to protect the busiest district in the city. The return of Engine 1 to the City of Beverly means that two companies will be available to respond throughout the busiest district and a dedicated Ladder Company will be able to focus on their specific tasks at the scene of a variety of emergencies.”