Assemblyman Kevin Byrne (R, C – Mahopac) joined Yorktown Supervisor and Assemblyman-Elect Matt Slater at Yorktown Heights Fire Department to meet with Chief Tim Mentrasti, Dive Lieutenant Tim Collins, and Junior Corp. Committee Chairman Martin McGannon to view their newly acquired under water drone/remote operating vehicle (ROV).
The purchase of the drone, which is utilized by YHFD’s Regional Dive/Water Rescue Team, was supported in part by a $50,000 SAM grant that was secured by Assemblyman Byrne in 2018. The ROV is supported by other technologies and equipment acquired from a separate grant previously secured by former New York State Senator Terrence Murphy. The rescue team is a reginal unit that works with partners in Putnam County, Westchester County, and western Connecticut.
“Providing our local emergency responders with the equipment they need to keep our communities safe is an essential responsibility of state government,” said Byrne. “Yorktown Heights Fire Department’s Regional Dive/Water Rescue Team is now able to perform more complicated underwater rescue missions that will assist in keeping not only Yorktown safe, but our surrounding communities as well.”
“This device has opened up our water rescue capabilities substantially,” said Tim Mentrasti, Chief of Yorktown Heights Fire Department. “During a mission, the average diver can descend to about sixty feet, whereas this ROV can perform at depths as deep as one thousand feet. We have already used the drone in lakes, reservoirs, and most recently in the Hudson River. The device has made our rescue efforts much safer, and we are excited to be able to utilize it within our rescue unit.”
“We all know what a great organization this is,” said Matt Slater, Yorktown Supervisor. “They do such great and important work in and around Yorktown. We are looking forward to getting a proper training facility here to train more people to use this lifesaving piece of emergency equipment.”
The above information was previously distributed and made public for immediate release by the Office of Assemblyman Kevin Byrne