COLLINSVILLE - Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner visited the Collinsville Fire Department on Tuesday and officially presented one of $2.2 Million Small Equipment Awards to 100 fire departments across the state.

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The Collinsville Fire Department said the grant will be used for vital safety gear. The fire department said this vital safety gear protects firefighters against thermal burns as well as gasses, vapors, and particulates found in smoke from modern furnishings and construction materials.

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“These products of combustion are thought to cause cancer in firefighters at a rate higher than in the general population,” the Collinsville Fire Department said in a release. “Firefighter protective clothing has a useful life of about ten years and about half of the Collinsville firefighters have protective clothing at least that old. Without the grant, budgetary restrictions would require the acquisition of the garments over a three-year period. With the award, the department will replace the gear by the end of 2018.”

The grants were also given to other area fire agencies.

The list included in Jersey County: QEM Fire Protection District with $22,750; and in Greene County: Carrollton Fire Protection District ($18,000); Roodhouse Fire Protection District ($21,760) and White Hall Fire Department ($22,000).

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