The Kansas State Fire Marshal's Office has awarded a $400,000 grant to 31 volunteer and part-time fire departments in the state to help them buy protective gear, KSNW reports.
According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, firefighters in the US have a 9% higher risk of being diagnosed with cancer and are 14% more likely to die from a cancer-related illness.
In Kansas, there have been several line-of-duty deaths due to heart attacks.
The grant will be used to buy everything from coats, pants, helmets, gloves, hoods, and boots to masks for breathing apparatuses and medical physicals.
The remaining $5,000 will be used to fund junior firefighter programs and to cover the cost of medical physicals that are not covered by the firefighter's insurance or reimbursed by their fire department.
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