The Hagerstown Fire Department will receive nearly $90,000 in grant money to help its campaign to reduce fires in the city.
U.S. Sens. Barbara Mikulski and Paul Sarbanes, both D-Md., announced Wednesday that the department was to be awarded $89,100 through the Department of Homeland Security's Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program.
Fire department Public Educator Mike Weller said the department sought the money for a three-tiered fire prevention program in the city. The program includes aggressively educating tenants and landlords of Hagerstown rental properties of the city's top fire causes, an engineering initiative to provide improved smoke alarms and equipment to landlords and rewarding landlords who hold tenants to strict fire-safety guidelines through lease and other agreements, he said.
Weller said the city program was started more than a year ago after the fire department received $15,000 in grant money. He said much more money was needed to effectively implement the program.