Air tanks donated to fire department

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, September 27, 2000

ERIK SANZENBACH / L’Observateur / September 27, 2000

GARYVILLE – St. John the Baptist Parish Sheriff, Wayne L. Jones, donatedfour self-contained breathing units to the Garyville Volunteer Fire Department on Monday.

The SCBUs were discovered lying next to some railroad tracks last February 6 by a LaPlace resident who was hiking in the woods behind Bayou Steel.

Ever since they were turned over to the Sheriff’s Office, Detectives Royal Burke and Eddie Cooper have been trying to find out who owns the breathing units.

Theu SCBUs are made by the MSA Company and are worth at least $1,700 each according to Fire Chief Faron Duhe of the Garyville Volunteer Fire Department.

Each unit contains an oxygen bottle, face mask and valve and are used by firefighters all over the country to enter burning buildings.

Burke and Cooper were unable to find who the units belonged to. They evencalled the manufacturer who said they had been sold, but didn’t know who owned them. The detectives believe the units were stolen.So Sheriff Jones decided that one of the parish fire departments could use the equipment.

According to Duhe, the SCBUS came in just the nick of time. The Garvyvillefire insurance rating was coming up at the beginning of October.

“We needed exactly four more breathing units,” said Duhe,”and these four are just what we need, to maintain our fire insurance rating.”In fact, with the four breathing units, the Garyville Volunteer Fire Department’s fire insurance rating gets even better going from a rating of five, to a rating of three.

Duhe plans to put two units on each of his firetrucks. All four of the unitswere made in 1995, but are in mint condition, according to Duhe.

“All we had to do was dust them off and they work great,” said Duhe.

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