Why are Charlotte firefighters getting bullet-proof vests? City - | WBTV Charlotte

Why are Charlotte firefighters getting bullet-proof vests? City fears active shooters

Police evacuate students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School after reports of a shooting. (Source: WSVN/CNN) Police evacuate students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School after reports of a shooting. (Source: WSVN/CNN)
CHARLOTTE, NC (Steve Harrison/The Charlotte Observer) -

To protect firefighters against active shooters, the city of Charlotte is planning to spend $1.575 million on new helmets, face shields and bullet-proof plates and vests.

Because firefighters are often first-responders, the city is worried they won’t be protected. The city said buying 372 sets of equipment will allow the fire department to “safely respond without hesitation.”

City Council is expected Monday to approve a contract with North American Rescue, which would provide the vests and plates, and another contract with Lawmen’s Distribution for helmets and face shields.

The North American Rescue contract is $380,000 a year for three years. The Lawmen’s Distribution contract is for $145,000 a year for three years.

The city said the equipment is “designed to absorb the impact and reduce or stop penetration to the body from firearms and projectiles.” It will “protect fire department personnel from gunfire while rescuing citizens trapped in incidents involving violence,” the city said.

The money will come from an Urban Area Security Initiative Grant.

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