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Firefighters To Be Protected Against Bullets

Some local firefighters now have protection against more than just fires. The Davenport Fire Department received a 5,600 dollar grant to buy ballistic helmets and armored vests for six firefighters, to be worn during active shooter situations. 

Chief Robb Macdougall says that during the 1999 Columbine School shooting, people that could've been saved actually bled to death because firefighters couldn't enter the building.

"So, that's kind of where we fast forward to now where we have all these active shooter incidents, and the thought is: We want to get people in there sooner to treat the wounded, to try and save as many lives as we can."

After the dramatic increase in shootings in recent years, Macdougall applied for the grant because he and many other departments recognized the need for a faster response from firefighters. 

"So, even if we don't have a major shooting here, if we have three, four people shot, it gives us a mechanism to treat them quicker, and to have an organized fashion of treating the victims, traging them, and getting them to the hospital. So, it's beneficial even if we don't have a major, major event."

The grant comes fromt he Scott County Regional Authority and the new gear will even protect against high velocity bullets.