Officers can breathe easier following equipment purchase vote

By: K. Michelle Moran | Grosse Pointe Times | Published December 19, 2017

GROSSE POINTE PARK — The Grosse Pointe Park Public Safety Department is about to get some new safety equipment for its officers.

The Park City Council unanimously voted in favor of the purchase of an upgraded Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus fill station and cascade system at a meeting Dec. 11.

Public Safety Director Stephen Poloni said the system they have now was purchased more than 20 years ago and no longer meets current standards, making it out of compliance with the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the National Fire Protection Association.

It’s used to fill the air bottles that officers wear when responding to a fire or a hazardous materials scene, and Poloni said the current system can’t fill those bottles to capacity.

Because the Park would be sharing the system with Grosse Pointe City, “We’d be splitting the cost with the City,” Poloni told the council.

The upgrade, which will cost $17,458, will be covered by a 60 percent share paid by the Park and a 40 percent share paid by the City, Poloni said. That means the Park would be picking up $10,474.80 worth of the tab. Besides sharing the purchase price, the City will cover 40 percent of the maintenance costs over the life of the system, Poloni said.

“For most of the things that we share with the City, we recognize that our city is bigger, so we tend to pay a bigger share,” City Councilwoman Barb Detwiler said.

Poloni estimated that the Park probably uses this system about 20 times per year.

“We use this every time there’s a fire or when we train,” he said.

Poloni said the Park doesn’t need to replace the compressor, only the fill station and cascade portions of the system. This item wasn’t budgeted, so he recommended using money from the capital expenditure fund to pay for it.

City Councilman Daniel Clark agreed, noting that this is something the city needs to purchase, “in light of the fact that we’re not in compliance and this constitutes a significant safety issue.”

The Grosse Pointe City Council unanimously approved  its portion of this purchase at its Dec. 18 meeting as part of the consent adgenda.