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State Fire Marshal

A Division of the Minnesota Department of Public Safety

Resources and Equipment

Resources and equipment  

Pocket media guidePhoto of the pocket media guide.

The Fire Department Pocket Media Guide is a tool to help firefighters work with the media in their community. The guide includes interview tips as well as talking points for various types of fires. If you would like free copies of this guide for your department, email Bruce West

Minnesota Incident Command System

The Minnesota Incident Command System was created to enable agencies to support each other on large wildfire incidents. Today, these multi-agency teams respond to a need for coordination on floods, search and rescue, large gatherings and wildfires. ​For more information, check out the MNICS website. 

Fire and Fall Prevention for Older Adults - Program Guide

In the past five years, in Minnesota, 42 percent of fire deaths were adults over the age of 60. The rate of falls in older, in Minnesota, is climbing faster than the national rate. In order to provide tools to drive these numbers down the Minnesota State Fire Chiefs Association along with the State Fire Marshal Division has created an education program for older adults. The goal of this program guide is to provide an educational resource to fire departments and community partners that will help them teach older adults how to prevent fires and falls in their home. The outcome of the goal is to save the lives and improve the quality of life of older adults.

Firefighters for Healing

Firefighters for Healing​ is a non-profit organization that helps burn survivors, families of burn survivors, and firefighters who are receiving care in the Twin Cities.  

Turnout Gear Washer/Extractor/Dryer Award Program

2019 Program (July 1, 2018 - June 30, 2019)

Despite being more physically fit and healthier than the general population firefighters, both career and volunteer/paid-on-call, experience cancer at a higher rates than those in the communities they serve.  Studies continue to show that firefighters are acutely exposed to known carcinogens during structure and other fires and are continually exposed via turnout gear that is soiled due to exposure to toxic combustion byproducts. 

In recent years, fire departments across Minnesota have implemented turnout gear decontamination procedures post fire events to help reduce firefighter exposure to toxic combustion byproducts.  At the same time mechanical turnout gear washers/extractors have been introduced as an effective and efficient means by which firefighters can best clean their soiled turnout gear and greatly reduce their exposure to combustion byproducts.

Many fire departments, however, have found commercial turnout gear washer/extractors, which can cost upwards of $10,000, to be cost prohibitive.  Therefore, the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, with funding from the Fire Safety Account, through the State Fire Marshal Division, has authorized a $300,000 matching award program to assist eligible fire departments in the purchase of commercial turnout gear washer/extractor. Along with a $300,000 matching award program for gear dryer(s).

Since 2015, the first year of the Turnout Gear washer/Extractor Program, the Department of Public Safety has awarded over $500,000 to over 60 MN fire departments for the purchase of turnout gear washers/extractors.

A good turnout gear decontamination program should also include equipment to quickly dry turnout gear after washing so that it can be more quickly played back into service.  Turnout gear dryers can dry wet gear in 4 hours or less as opposed to the much longer “hang dry method”. Wet turnout gear is difficult to don and can cause steam burns to the wearer. Also, if the decontamination process (washing/drying) can be accomplished more quickly and efficiently, firefighters will be more likely to regularly clean their gear thus leading to more healthy firefighters in the long-term.

Individual Grant Amounts:

Available funding will pay for individual grants of no more than $10,000 for a gear washer/extractor and $8,000 for a dryer.  A local match of the grant award, as indicated in the chart below, is required.  The required local match amount will be based on the population of the applicant’s fire department coverage area.  The type of equipment purchased will first need to meet the approval of the State Fire Marshal prior to funds being awarded. Fire departments will indicate whether they are applying to purchase a gear washer/extractor, a dryer, or both. 

​Population ​Required Match Percent
Up to 10,000​ ​10%
​10,001 - 25,000 ​25%
​25,001 - 50,000 ​35%
​Over 50,000 ​50%

Eligible Applicants:

Only Minnesota fire departments that currently use the MNFIRS reporting system will be eligible to receive funds.

Any fire service agency applying for an award must include a letter from the jurisdiction indicating their intent to purchase a turnout gear washer/extractor/dryer(s).  The letter must be from the governance entity (e.g. the city council, township board).  A fire service agency is defined as having a fire department identification number (FDID) from the State Fire Marshal Division.

Awards will be made to the jurisdiction submitting the award application.  The award contract must be signed by a representative of the lead jurisdiction having the legal authority to sign contracts for that jurisdiction.  Legal authority may be documented by a resolution or official minutes from the jurisdiction and will be required at the time that the award contract is to be signed.  It is not required for the grant application.


The Committee will consider the following factors and prioritize awards based on, but not limited to:

  • Overall jurisdiction/fire department budget
  • Number of firefighters
  • Population serviced
  • Current inventory of turnout gear cleaning equipment
  • Average annual number of fires
Jurisdictions of two or more, in close proximity, may submit joint applications.

Grant Process:

An evaluation committee will review and score the applications based on the above criteria and present a recommendation to the Commissioner of Public Safety who will make the final determination. Once a request has been awarded, a formal award agreement will be prepared and must be signed by the awardee organization and the Department of Public Safety. Once the signature process has been completed, the award is considered fully executed and becomes a legally binding agreement between the grantee organization and the Department of Public Safety.


The award funds are available on a cost reimbursement basis for FY19 (July 1, 2018 – June 30, 2019) where costs are reimbursed after they are incurred and paid by the grantee agencies.  The grantee organization will be required to provide to the State Fire Marshal Division the written summary of all expenditures, including documentation on how the award and matching funds were spent. 

Application (Fillable PDF)     Checklist (PDF)     Application Questions (PDF)​

Application Submission:

A complete application packet must be received by 4:00 pm CST Tuesday October 16, 2018, preferably by email at or by mail:

State Fire Marshal Division
Attn: Nolan Pasell
445 Minnesota Street, Suite #145
St. Paul, MN 55101-5145

Applications not received by this deadline will not be considered.  It is the responsibility of the applicants to ensure that their application is received by the deadline.

Any questions about the application process should be directed to Nolan Pasell at (651) 201-7218 or

American Red Cross: Home fire risk map

The Home Fire Risk Map is a planning resource to improve regional in-home and smoke alarm installation by helping to identify vulnerable communities across the country. To learn more about the Home Fire Campaign and how to use the Home Fire Risk map a four step training tutorial has been created.​

Materials generator

The Materials Generator is a new tool that allows departments to generate customized door hangers, fliers and activity guides using proven fire safety messages with your own department logo and contact information. The tool was developed by a team of fire safety and communications experts to help enhance your community risk reduction programs. You can find the Materials Generator on the Vision 20/20 website.

Federal excess property

Need fire suppression equipment for your department? The federal government makes equipment available through its Federal Excess Property Program. You can find more information about this program on the Minnesota DNR's website.

Service Planning Grant

The State Fire Marshal Division occasionally has money available for fire departments interested in studying the feasibility of sharing services. You can read through some of the reports and learn more about the service planning grant program online. You may also contact Tate Mills, Fire Service Specialist at 320-333-2817 or

Kitchen fire safety trailers 

Through a grant from the MN FAIR Plan, the Minnesota State Fire Chiefs Association Public Education Committee has two Kitchen Fire Safety Live Demonstration Units available to fire departments across Minnesota. Learn more on the MSFCA website. 

Fire Training Prop Trailers  

The Minnesota State Fire Marshal Division (SFMD) has used an Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for eight fire training prop trailers to position  throughout Minnesota. Using fire department  feedback, SFMD staff determined these eight  trailers will help meet the training needs of  Minnesota fire departments. Five of the trailers focus on and include props necessary for training for fires involving cars,  outdoor grills and liquid propane. The other three trailers focus on and include props required to conduct training on roof  ventilation, chimney fires and forcible entry. Learn more on the MBFTE website.

Wildfire information and burning restrictions

Get more information about the current burning restrictions in Minnesota and the most recent wildfire status from the Minnesota DNR.

Sparky the Fire Dog

Let Sparky the Fire Dog help you. Sparky the Fire Dog is perfect for teaching fire and life safety to children because it can communicate with them on their level.​​


Resources for your community 

Burn Institute's interactive website

The Burn Institute's Fire Safe Kid website is a fun, interactive place for kids to learn all about fire and burn prevention. 

Keep away!

Keep away is a fun activity designed to reinforce the message that lighters and matches are tools only for grown-ups -- not toys -- and to help them develop visual memory skills. 


Firetrap is a game designed to teach children to quickly get out of the house in case of a fire.​​