New Jersey firefighters gather gear to help counterparts in Ukraine stay safe

CLIFTON, New Jersey (WABC) -- Firefighters across New Jersey are working to make sure that firefighters in Ukraine stay safe while battling the enemy.

The images of firefighters doing their job in the middle of a bombed-out war zone has hit home.

Firefighter Oleg Skachko of Clifton, New Jersey, has watched his native land burn and rallied the courage to ask first responders at home how to help.

"Nobody anticipated how big the fire community was going to get together to help out on this cause," Skachko said.

They have already collected over 100 turnout uniforms, which firefighters wear to battle the worst conditions, but it's nothing compared to battling blazes after buildings are bombed and people are trapped and suffering.

"You can't even compare to what they're facing right now, you just can't compare it," Skachko said.

The Clifton Fire Department originally thought it would be a small donation effort but now they are getting calls from all over the country from fire departments that want to help in the effort.

"I've been receiving calls from West Virginia, Alabama and Ohio, all pledging gear," Clifton Fire Department Lt. Mark Drew said.

The support comes from far and near as Old Tappan's fire department gave a helping hand.

The Ukrainian community in New Jersey is using every resource with pride to help fly or ship the equipment.

The first delivery will go out next week and take about 12 days to arrive in the war-torn locations in Urkaine. They say every donation will help.

ALSO READ | Here's how to donate, help Ukraine amid Russian attacks
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In this Eyewitness News special, we look at the local charities and heroes who are stepping up to help Ukraine following Russia's invasion of the country.

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