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Galena Days Serves as Fundraiser for Fire Department
By Felicia Lawrence
GALENA, KS.--- "We use our money primarily from Galena Days to buy new equipment with," said Bill Hall, Galena Fire Chief.
The Galena Fire Department services Galena, Riverton, and assists the City of Baxter Springs with routine house fire calls. All of this is done with volunteers on a small budget.
"We do have one paid driver who resides here at the fire station with his family. We have a paid relief driver, but all of the rest of the guys are volunteers. And the city maintains an $80,000 budget to buy gasoline and equipment as far as repairs on that and insurance on the trucks and so forth. But otherwise, we get out and hustle all the time for equipment," said Chief Hall.
Which means the money raised at a festival like Galena Days can have a big impact.
"Well, you know we're city funded, but this is a big part of our budget to operate. You know we buy our rescue equipment, hoses, nozzles, rescue tools and even some of our main equipment- our trucks and such. It helps fund that," said Steve Hall, Assistant Galena Fire Chief
So, with a good turn out for Galena Days this year, Chief Bill Hall says they're hoping to purchase one piece of equipment that will cost them more than a pretty penny.
"Our latest equipment we're going to acquire is a remote control nozzle for the front of our tank truck, that's $4,200," said Chief Hall.
The department already has one remote nozzle, however, buying a second one to place on a water truck that carries 2,000 gallons of water will assist firefighters during the day shift.
"The problem you face with a volunteer department, is you know especially daytime fires, you might be limited with as far as the number of volunteers that can go. So the less man power you have, something like a remote nozzle is just beneficial for the driver," said Steve Hall.
The remote nozzle will allow anyone driving a fire truck, the opportunity to spray water while sitting in the driver's seat. Chief Hall calls that a great investment.
"We're always looking for new things that's going to benefit us and make us better," said Chief Hall.
Chief Hall says it's unclear how much money will be raised at Galena Days this year, but the department will be thankful to have whatever they receive.