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Posted on: March 2, 2022

MCFR HIRES 24 FIREFIGHTERS WITH A 3-YEAR, NO-MATCH SAFER GRANT

MCFR 24 new hires stand and kneel in front of a fire truck

Monroe County Fire Rescue welcomes 24 newly hired firefighters after receiving a $5.6 million Federal Emergency Management Agency SAFER (Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response) grant to adequately staff five firehouses in the Florida Keys. The grant provides 24 new positions for four firefighters on duty per shift at all Monroe County firehouses, rather than three. The grant will be spread across three years to pay for the additional firefighters’ salaries and benefits.

“Having four firefighters at each station will decrease response times, adding a further level of safety for all of our residents and visitors,” said Monroe County Fire Rescue Chief Steve Hudson. “Providing appropriate minimum staffing for fire suppression and other life-threatening emergencies will minimize firefighter injuries, civilian injury and death, and property losses in the County.”

Monroe County firefighters follow a “two-in, two-out” policy mandating firefighters enter a burning building only when they can always maintain voice or visual contact with another firefighter. In addition, two firefighters must be outside the building and ready to initiate a rescue if those inside run into trouble. Monroe County Fire Rescue also staffs the Trauma Star helicopters for medical flights to the mainland in conjunction with the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office. 

There are now 144 full-time firefighter positions assigned to 24-hour emergency services.

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