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Wall and Interior Volunteer Fire Departments to Receive Grant through Badlands National Park

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BADLANDS NATIONAL PARK, Interior, S.D. – The National Park Service, in conjunction with Badlands National Park, will award grant funds to two local volunteer fire departments (VFDs). Wall VFD will receive a check for $6,500. Interior VFD will receive a check for $19,985. Funds will be used by the departments to purchase radio equipment, personal protective equipment, and for firefighter training.

The Rural Fire Assistance program is primarily designed to increase firefighter safety and enhance the fire protection capabilities of rural fire departments. This is achieved by assisting those departments in meeting or exceeding accepted standards of wildland fire qualifications, training, and performance. Emphasis is placed on departments that protect rural communities and play a substantial cooperative role in the protection of federal lands.

Of the 388 units managed by the NPS, at least 245 experience wildland fires either originating within the unit, or igniting outside and threatening the park. Particularly in the smaller units, significant assistance from adjacent small communities' rural or volunteer fire departments is required to respond to wildland fires. Wall and Interior VFDs have an active history of assisting Badlands National Park on wildland fires within the park.

What: Large checks presented to local VFD Chiefs

Where: Fire Cache, Badlands National Park

When: 2:00 pm on Thursday, November 6

Images: Award of giant checks, park staff, VFD chiefs, fire equipment

Interviews: Depending on availability, park officials and VFD chiefs

How: Show up at the Badlands Fire Cache by 2:00 pm. The fire cache

is located approximately

¼ mile south of the Ben Reifel Visitor

Center on Ben Reifel Road. Stop and ask for direction at the

Ben Reifel Visitor Center or call Judy Olson at 605-433-5240

for more information.