Thanks to the generosity of many Enterprise residents, The Enterprise Home Builders Association and other area businesses, the Fire Department is now equipped with state of the art Thermal Imaging Cameras.
The cameras allow the fireman to maneuver in a fire by giving them the ability to see through the darkness and smoke.
To date, the department has received two of the Thermal Imaging Camera’s and is preparing to order a third, along with various equipment that will aid in the utilization of the cameras. According to Fire Chief Byron Herring, the cameras have already been very useful.
“We recently fought a large fire at Sessions Peanut Company,” he said. “The camera’s were very helpful in showing us exactly where the fire was hottest and where it was spreading.
“Being able to see those things allowed the fire department to better concentrate their efforts in working the fire and also helped with the safety issues.”
Herring added the cameras have also been a useful tool in several recent home fires.
“We recently responded to a call of a house fire,” Herring said. “When we arrived there was smoke coming from every window, which is usually the case in a fire.
“Upon arriving on the scene we immediately utilized the camera,” he added. “We walked around the outside of the house and found the room that was the hottest. We went into the house and directly to the room and found the source of the fire was a space heater. In this instance, we were able to spare a lot of the associated fire damage by being able to find the source so quickly.”
The initiative to purchase the cameras began with a request from the Enterprise Home Builders Association to the Enterprise City Council in the fall of 1998. They asked the council to add a voluntary $2 donation to the water bills for a period of one year. The program was so successful; however, the donation goal was met in only two months.
Along with donations from Enterprise residents, the program was funded by donations by the Enterprise Home Builders Association, the E.L. Gibson Foundation and other area businesses.
Donnell Woodall, co-chairman of the fund-raiser of the EHBA said he was very pleased with the success of the program. “We want to thank all of those who participated by donating to this program,” he said. “We are glad we were able to help the fire department acquire the cameras and we know they will be put to good use.”