Fresno firefighters received 42 small oxygen masks to bolster their rescue efforts aimed at saving cats, dogs and other household pets at the scene of fires.
The department previously had two pet oxygen masks that were donated by community members. Susan Disney, a volunteer with the department’s Community Emergency Response Team, donated the additional 42 masks — which cost more than $3,000 — after she saw a video that went viral of Fresno firefighter Cory Kalanick rescuing a kitten on June 8, said Koby Johns, spokesman for the Fresno Fire Department.
The new masks were showcased Tuesday at Station 9 in central Fresno.
“We’re just excited to have another tool that can provide an enhanced level of service to the community,” Johns said. “People care a lot about their animals and we care a lot about people. So, if we can do a little something else to make someone’s day a little better, then we are really excited to do that.”
The oxygen masks will be on emergency response vehicles from all of the department’s 24 stations — including all fire engines and trucks, and all reserve engines and trucks, Johns said. The masks were purchased through the Emma Zen Foundation, a nonprofit that specializes in equipping fire departments with pet oxygen kits.
AmeriCorps NPRC Member 2013-2014
Preparedness Coordinator, Community Preparedness and Resilience Services
American Red Cross – Central Valley Region