AAA Michigan Celebrates 18 Years of 'Jaws of Life' Grant Awards--Newest One to Armada Township

Sep 14, 2011, 10:00 ET from AAA Michigan

DEARBORN, Mich., Sept. 14, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- For the past 18 years, AAA Michigan has been quietly donating funds for 'Jaws of Life' hydraulic lifesaving equipment to the communities that need it most.  To date, 66 grants totaling more than $1,000,000 have been provided throughout Michigan.

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The grants – which average $15,800 each – are traditionally awarded to small communities that do not have the funds to purchase 'Jaws of Life' equipment on their own.

The newest grant was awarded to the Armada Township Fire Department today (Sept. 14) at the Armada Fairgrounds, located at 74280 Fair Street, Armada, MI. Department firefighters provided a brief demonstration of the new equipment.  Nestled on the northern end of Macomb County, the department covers the Township of Armada, along with two surrounding communities, that otherwise would not have fire protection – for a total of 52 square miles.  Armada provides extrication service for the other areas through mutual aid agreements.  

"We know this life saving equipment will be put to excellent use," noted AAA Traffic Safety Manager Jack Peet in presenting the grant.  "This is the first time we've presented this equipment in the Metro Detroit area.  We know this will benefit thousands of residents who live or work in Macomb County. "

Peet added that the grant presentation continues AAA's proud tradition of providing grants to recipients located on well-traveled routes that serve Michigan's tourism industry, and to communities that may not have enough funding to purchase the equipment on their own.

"It  is critical to have state-of-the-art lifesaving equipment should the need arise," Peet stressed.  "As an auto club, the safety and security of our AAA members and the traveling public are always first and foremost at AAA Michigan."

"We are grateful to AAA for the 'Jaws' grant that will enable us to purchase extrication equipment," said Lt. Kevin Kanehl of the Armada Fire Department.

"This aids in saving valuable minutes from our response time, increasing the likelihood that we can save lives during the critical 'Golden Hour.'"  The new equipment will also be more effective against the new metals being used in many vehicles.

Armada Fire Department is staffed by four paid and 30 part-paid/volunteer firefighters who respond to more than 100 vehicular crash calls annually.  

The current extrication equipment used by the department is old and outdated and it is difficult to find replacement parts.  Approximately 20 percent of Armada's calls have required extrication equipment each year for the past several years.

The department provided numerous letters of support for the AAA grant request from area fire departments and law enforcement offices.

For more information on the AAA Michigan 'Jaws of Life' grant application process, interested parties may contact Jack Peet,  AAA Traffic Safety Manager, at 1 Auto Club Drive, Dearborn, MI 48126.

AAA Michigan offers automotive, travel, insurance and financial services to more than 1.6 million members in Michigan. 
It is part of The Auto Club Group (ACG), the largest affiliation of AAA clubs in the Midwest, with approximately
4.1 million members in eight states.  ACG belongs to the national AAA federation, a not-for-profit organization with more than 50 million members in the United States and Canada.