ORLANDO, Fla. - Orange County Fire Rescue is increasing its manpower, drastically, hiring 63 new firefighters.
The county getting a $9 million grant for the additional positions.
“We were able to receive a federal grant to hire firefighters, and it’s a matching grant,” said Jerry Demings, Orange County Mayor.
Mayor Demings says the staffing increase will make the department more efficient.
“What it allows us to do is add a fourth person on our units, so that really can work to our advantage to cut down on response times, so that when a fire unit responds, they have adequate staff,” Demings said.
This means crews will be able to enter a burning house faster than ever before.
“They have to have four people on scene to go in if there is a true fire they are fighting, and so we don’t have to wait on a secondary unit to come now,” Demings said.
It's critical time that could save a life or home.
“We want to be efficient, rather than send two units, we have one unit that can get to extinguishing a fire," Demings said. "We want to be able to do that in a timely manner."
The new firefighters will help make that goal a reality.
Mayor Demings says he hopes to fill the positions as soon as possible.
“We’re gonna be very active in the coming year looking for fire personnel,” he said.