Poughkeepsie…Dutchess County Executive William R. Steinhaus announced today Dutchess County has received notification of a $30,935 grant award to the County from the United States Department of Homeland Security’s Commercial Equipment Direct Assistance Program (CEDAP) to provide support to the Dutchess County Volunteer Hazardous Materials Response Team (Haz-Mat).
“Continuing to upgrade and strengthen Dutchess County’s public safety, emergency services and "first responder" capability and capacity is always a top priority for us,” said County Executive Steinhaus. “We are proud of the volunteers who dedicate their time and talent to serve on our Haz-Mat team. This grant will help us to provide them valuable tools to continue to ensure the safety of our community in emergencies.”
The CEDAP grant will be utilized to purchase state-of-the-art, handheld chemical identification instrument for in-the-field identification of toxic industrial chemicals (TICs), narcotics, contraband, chemical weapons, and white powders. The highly sophisticated equipment will enable the Haz-Mat team to greatly reduce the time it takes to identify unknown hazardous materials and ensure the proper corrective remediation actions are taken.
The Hazardous Materials Response Team is a division of the Department of Emergency Response. The team is comprised of 28 volunteers who are available 24 hours a day 7 days a week. The membership is made up of Volunteer firefighters, local government and industrial personnel. The Team is available to Incident Commanders to address and mitigate hazardous materials events. This highly trained team responds within the Hudson Valley region as well as Dutchess County.
CEDAP complements the FEMA National Preparedness Directorate’s other major grants programs to enhance regional response capabilities, mutual aid, and interoperable communications by providing technology and equipment, together with training and technical assistance required to operate that equipment, to public safety agencies in smaller jurisdictions and certain metropolitan areas.
“I commend our Dutchess County Volunteer Hazardous Materials Response Team (Haz-Mat) for securing this important grant and further enhancing our emergency response capabilities. Their dedicated efforts ensure we are keeping families safe throughout Dutchess County,” concluded County Executive Steinhaus.