Firefighters in South Carolina are advocating for more protections when it comes to cancer.
Two new bills have been introduced in the House and Senate that would provide firefighters with a health care benefit plan.
Officials say this is the first time the South Carolina Firefighters' Association and the International Association of Firefighters have pushed for the same legislation.
Brandon Gruber is a firefighter with St. Paul’s Fire District and was diagnosed with breast cancer just a few weeks before Easter in 2019.
Although he had his last chemotherapy treatment in November, he says he wants this issue to be addressed.
“It seems more profound now, it’s happening now to younger firemen and firemen all over the country,” Gruber said."People have bills and families, luckily I don’t have a family because if I wasn’t going to be able to work, how would I be able to be a father?
WCSC-TV CBS 5 Charleston
Horry County firefighters are testing a new device to help keep traffic moving around emergencies and protect first responders.
According to a post on Horry County Fire Rescue’s Facebook page, crews are field-testing new battery-powered road flares.
Fire officials note the flares follow the portable speed bumps that were rolled out across the county in 2019. Those devices are deployed on the road while first responders work a crash, thereby slowing traffic to a crawl.
The goal with the flares is to provide firefighters with another tool to keep traffic flowing and first responders safe as they respond to an emergency.
“If you see bright, flashing lights – on apparatus or on the ground – that absolutely means slow down and be cautious!” the post stated.
WMBF-TV NBC 32 Myrtle Beach
The Williamsburg County Fire Department is one of 18 local fire departments in South Carolina participating in a fire safety program for young students and families under the leadership of S.C. State Fire, through a grant from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and FEMA.
Firefighters will visit second and third grade classrooms in selected high-risk areas this spring to teach students about smoke alarms, home fire dangers, and what to do if a home fire occurs. Afterwards, the firefighters will offer the students’ families fire safety visits in their homes to install free smoke alarms and to share safety education.
“According to the National Fire Protection Association, two out of every three fire deaths in America occur in homes where smoke alarms are either missing or not working,” Deputy Chief Calvin Linke of the Williamsburg County Fire Department said.