Odessa City Council approves new thermal imaging cameras for OFR

Published: Sep. 13, 2023 at 10:08 PM CDT
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ODESSA, Texas (KOSA) - The Odessa City Council approved the purchase of 11 new Bullard thermal imaging cameras for Odessa Fire Rescue totaling $86,433.27.

The new equipment is important for the safety of the firefighters and the public.

“It’s important that the council invests in these cameras because it’s investing in the community, gosh any individual it can save lives,” said Council Member At-Large Denise Swanner.

Swanner says the cameras are vital.

“if they’re in need or something these cameras will detect where the firemen are at and just anyone in the fire,” said Swanner.

There will be one on every fire unit and every battalion chief and division captain will have one.

“We can use them in many different ways, search and rescue, ventilation hazmat stuff, locating fires on structure fires, looking for hotspots,” said OFR Chief Jason Cotton.

Cotton says the cameras are a big deal for their department.

“They use a color scheme depending on hot cold things like that to where they have different settings on them you can focus on cold more than anything else or you can focus on heat related stuff more than something else,” said Cotton.

The current cameras have not been replaced in five years, are old, broken and cannot be repaired anymore.