Virginia American Water Awards Grants to Five Volunteer Fire Departments

Alexandria, Va.  – Virginia American Water has awarded $2,500 in grants to volunteer fire departments in communities within its Eastern District. The grants are part of an annual company program to financially assist rural fire departments within Virginia American Water service areas.

Virginia American Water's Eastern District is comprised of 18 separate water systems serving more than 2,600 customers across five counties on or near Virginia's Northern Neck. Each department listed below has been granted $500 to advance fire protection and public safety.

“The brave men and women who serve as firefighters and emergency responders have a remarkable sense of duty to protect and assist their neighbors,” said Barry Suits, president, Virginia American Water. “Through our annual firefighting grant program, we can thank them for their heroism and help them obtain the equipment necessary to safeguard the people who live and work in the communities we serve.”

The Callao Volunteer Fire Department, located in Northumberland County, will use its grant to purchase a FLIR K1 Situational Awareness Camera. This camera will serve as an extra set of eyes on the scene of a fire, allowing Incident Commanders and officers to quickly complete a thorough 360-degree assessment in total darkness and through heavy smoke. This will allow them to conduct assessments on a fire, make rescues of civilians or injured firefighters and will also assist in HAZ-MAT incidents.

The Fairfields Volunteer Fire Department, also in Northumberland County, will use the grant to purchase five new sets of personal protective equipment (PPE) such as wildland extrication gear. This gear is lightweight and will be more efficient when fighting wood and brush fires. It will also help extend the life of their structural PPE.

The Colonial Beach Volunteer Fire Department in Westmoreland County plans to purchase supplies for their water/dry suit rescue team. Having these tools, such as paddle knives, throw bags and marine binoculars will allow this team to offer their rescue skills not just in Colonial Beach, but also to the surrounding areas in Westmoreland County, Richmond County, King George and Charles County in water-based rescues.

The Upper Lancaster Volunteer Fire Departments in Lancaster County plans to use their grant to purchase new dry wall hooks for equipment, a force axe, a flair carrying container and thirty-minute red flares. This new equipment will be used to stock their newest fire engine that they received in January of 2020.

The Oak Grove Volunteer Fire Department in Westmoreland County will utilize their grant support to replace a valve on their fire truck that controls the primary water intake. This upgraded valve will allow the firefighters to control water volume and pressure from a hydrant, and also water intake from their portable tank.


About Virginia American Water
Virginia American Water, a subsidiary of American Water (NYSE: AWK), is the largest investor-owned water utility in the state, providing high-quality and reliable water services to approximately 325,000 people.  For more information, visit and follow Virginia American Water on Twitter and Facebook

About American Water 
With a history dating back to 1886, American Water is the largest and most geographically diverse U.S. publicly traded water and wastewater utility company. The company employs more than 6,800 dedicated professionals who provide regulated and market-based drinking water, wastewater and other related services to 15 million people in 46 states. American Water provides safe, clean, affordable and reliable water services to our customers to make sure we keep their lives flowing. For more information, visit and follow American Water on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

Media Contact:
Marybeth Leongini
External Affairs Manager