KUTZTOWN, Pa. -

Attacks on first responders in other areas of the United States have a fire company in Berks County taking action.

"It's very unfortunate that it has to come to this," said Chief Eric Diehl, Kutztown Fire Company.

Diehl said times have changed since he first started with the company about 30 years ago. Now, with the help of a grant, his company has bought bullet-proof vests to increase safety.

"Through the events that have occurred throughout the nation, we've chosen to purchase plate-carrying bullet-proof vests to protect our personnel when responding to certain types of calls," added Diehl.

Those calls include assisting on drug overdoses and anything deemed life-threatening, especially when weapons could be involved.

"A firefighter in Ohio, just a few months ago, got shot in the helmet," Diehl told 69 News.

The vests arrived about two weeks ago, but they were just put on the trucks Thursday night. Diehl said his team is happy with the acquisition

The fire company posted on Facebook about the new vests. Officials want to get the word out about the new gear so people don't confuse them with police officers.

"We don't want the public to think that we're trying to do the law enforcement's job. We're just trying to protect ourselves," explained Diehl.

Soon, the fire company will have badges with a patch that reads "Rescue" to help differentiate them from other responders.