Extrication equipment, radios stolen from Ore. VFD station
The Hamlet Volunteer Fire Department said it has received many donation offers
The Hamlet Volunteer Fire Department announced last week that it had received many donation offers.
"This is amazing! The offers alone are a great reminder of public support, and help take some of the sting of the theft away from our volunteers. At this point, we are waiting to see what insurance will cover, and until this happens we are not planning on setting up a venue for donations," the department said on Facebook.
By Ethan Myers
The Daily Astorian
HAMLET, Ore. — The Hamlet Volunteer Fire Department had several pieces of equipment stolen from a fire station late Tuesday night.
The station, located on Hamlet Road, was found by a resident Wednesday morning with its door kicked in.
There were boot prints on the door and the doorframe was broken, Matt Verley, the fire chief, said.
After running through the station's inventory, it was discovered that the extrication equipment — the "Jaws of Life" — and several handheld radios were taken.
"They went through everything," Verley said. "Every door was open on every truck and all the cabinet doors in the station."
Verley said the fire district's two stations have not been broken into before, but that the theft follows a number of recent property crimes in the area.
"It's part of the continuing trend we're seeing out here unfortunately," he said.
Last year, the rural fire district received a $48,000 grant to upgrade the extrication equipment.
The fire department, made up entirely of volunteers, said in a Facebook post Wednesday that because of the district's small budget, the theft has hampered the ability to offer effective aid to car crash victims and replacing the extrication equipment is beyond their immediate ability.
Anyone with information related to the theft is encouraged to reach out to Clatsop County Sheriff's Office, which is investigating the break-in.
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