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Sunday, May 1, 2016

Homeland Security Grant provides equipment

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Det. Sgt. Ken Guidry, Chief Deputy David Huffmaster, Deputies Gary Mitchell and Shane Russell and Sheriff Mark Counts proudly show the new equipment the Sharp County Sheriff's office received through a Homeland Security grant. The trailer and four-wheel-drive mule will be utilized for search and rescue calls, as well as disaster situations in the county.
The Sharp County Sheriff's Department has been notified of approval of a Homeland Security grant, which was applied for in the fall of 2011.

Sheriff Mark Counts said his department was able to purchase a Kawasaki Mule MTV with a portion of the $16,000 grant, as well as a self contained trailer.

Counts said the trailer will be retrofitted to serve as a command center during search and rescue operations and other emergency situations and disasters.

The department was also able to purchase six telescoping halogen lights to light the trailer during these operations.

The sheriff said the department will add computers and other equipment to the trailer to improve communications during emergency situations.

Since the county implemented a dive team in 2011, the trailer can also be used as a base for the team during drowning and water search rescue missions.

Counts said the county will also be able to assist other counts and agencies with mutual aid using the equipment.

Chief Deputy David Huffmaster and Dan Melbourne wrote the grant that provided the funding for the equipment to the department.

The sheriff said, although they do not like to think about tragic events and disasters occurring within the county, the trailer has both heat and air to be utilized year round as the need arises.

The mule is able to navigate into rough terrain where costly damage is likely to occur to police vehicles that have traditionally been used in the same areas.

"I think they are great tools that will be beneficial to the sheriff's department. This new equipment allows us to be prepared in the event of disasters and other events," Counts said.

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