PUEBLO Colo. — After driving for more than 17 hours, a group of Mexican firefighters is finally in southern Colorado where they will receive thousands of dollars worth of donated equipment.
Los bomberos de Chihuahua has been using self-contained breathing apparatus that’s nearly 30 years old but that all changed on Thursday after the Pueblo Fire Department gave them over one hundred oxygen tanks, 53 complete sets, and hundreds of facepieces.
“Our equipment is old and obsolete,” said Joel Estrada with bomberos de Chihuahua. “We got it in the 90s.”
An international border is what separates the two departments, but they’ve been working side by side for years. From training exercises to ongoing surplus equipment donations, it’s a cooperation that was made possible through Pueblo’s sister cities partnership.
“We are very fortunate in the US to have funding to access and things but there are other departments who have a harder time with that,” the Administrative Fire Captain of Pueblo Fire Department Woody Percival said.
Nearly 200 people make up the bomberos of Chihuahua fire department which is responsible for taking care of a community with a population of nearly one million.
“There’s a 30-year difference between our equipment our trip took us 17 hours it was just simply worth it,” Estrada said.