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Fire board approves purchase of server, firewall upgrades

January 23, 2019

BULLHEAD CITY — The Bullhead City Fire Department continues to complete its bond orders.

The fire district’s governing board voted Tuesday to approved a couple of information technology purchases.

One item is a server/firewall upgrade that technology services manager David Verley said gives the BCFD the capacity to save more data and two layers of backup — a physical off-site component and encrypted cloud storage.

Sunstate Technology Group, of Phoenix, is the vendor for the server upgrade and CDW-G won the firewall contract. Combined, the items will cost just under $75,000.

Verley said the Sunstate bid was about $15,000 higher than the other bid on the server upgrade, but offered expandability the competitor did not.

“The other company wanted to sell us what we need now,” Verley said after the meeting. “Sunstate took more time to understand our needs and plan for the future.”

The board also approved the purchase of a radio channel upgrade from McIntosh Communications. Verley said the upgrade will result in better communication as the department moves from using land lines to a microwave system. He said the move will result in cost savings for the BCFD.

The items were among projects listed in a $16.7 million bond package approved by fire district voters in 2017.

Also at the meeting, Fire Chief Patrick Moore said the BCFD has completed testing and hired three firefighters, who are expected to start work in the next few weeks, and placed other qualified candidates on a reserve list for the year.

Assistant Chief Scott Neal said the department is expanding its wellness program. Each employee will be given a blood draw, hearing and eye tests and other health assessments and be placed on “fit for duty” or “not fit for duty” status, and will follow up with physicians, if needed.

Neal said participation in the wellness program was voluntary, but is being made mandatory.

Emergency medical services manager Forrest Taylor said the department received a grant from the Western Arizona Council of EMS for seven EZ-IO Power Drivers. The devices are used, he said, to inject medication into a patient with quicker access than possible with an IV. He described the Power Driver as a drill that can get into the patient’s bone.

Taylor said it most likely would be used on a patient having a cardiac emergency.

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