Cypress Creek Fire Department Donates Used Equipment to Helping Hands Program

Oct 20, 2020

On Wednesday, September 2, 2020, Cypress Creek Fire Department’s Chief Brett Jacobs delivered a gear donation to the Texas A&M Forest Service’s Helping Hands donation center in Lufkin, TX.

Cypress Creek Fire Department donated 28 wildland helmets, 20 water rescue helmets, 24 swift water rescue life jackets, 30 SCBA air-packs, 37 turnout coats, 38 pairs of pants and 36 pairs of boots.

Texas A&M Forest Service’s Helping Hands Program “allows donations of gently-used fire/rescue equipment… to be made available to fire departments throughout the state while providing liability relief to the donor” . After accepting a donation, the Helping Hands team will thoroughly inspect each item and if need, run the necessary tests to determine its quality. From there, the team works to distribute used equipment to Volunteer Fire Departments across Texas.

You may be wondering why gear gets donated if it is still in working condition. The simple answer is that the Texas Commission on Fire Protection, or TCFP, sets standards that full-time departments must adhere to, including regulations on gear.

For example, the TCFP requires that bunker gear (protective suits) be retired after 10 years. Sometimes, gear may still be in good working condition, so programs such as the Texas A&M Forest Service’s Helping Hands are vital in extending the lifetime of gear by passing it on to volunteer fire departments that do not have to adhere to the same 10-year standard.

Written by Office Assistant Julia Rumfield