Firefighting gear: Is it time for large changes?

Firefighting gear: Is it time for large changes?

Here’s a hard look at the barriers prohibiting meaningful PPE innovation “Don’t fix what is not broken” is a common phrase used to impede change or at least to question change for change’s sake. If we look at the turnout clothing industry, we actually see a product range that is relatively mature with continual, gradual improvements. In essence, gear is pretty much the way it has been for more than two decades. Yes there are the occasional blips where something new comes along like barrier hoods, and novel improvements can bring about an interesting materials or features. For the most part, the vast majority of the fire service seems to be satisfied with current state of technology for turnout gear. But the reality is that we live in a rapidly changing world, and we are constantly affected by new discoveries and technological developments. The current situation leads to two questions: why are there not larger changes afoot in the industry, and what types of changes might the fire service be missing out on? Change comes about usually because of firefighter needs or a new technology becomes available that supplants the old technology. In the early 2000s, SCBA went through a tremendous change when there was a perceived need that there needed to be chemical, biological and radiological protection as part of the SCBA. This need drove some significant changes in how SCBA were designed and the materials used in their construction. At about the same time, it became possible to incorporate a heads up display that allowed a more effective means for firefighters to monitor their air levels. These...
New download: “Guide to Cancer Prevention Through PPE”

New download: “Guide to Cancer Prevention Through PPE”

Firefighters can do little to control their exposure to toxic substances that adversely affect health. They can, however, mitigate that exposure through sound practices like wearing SCBA, cleaning PPE after incidents, not smoking, exercising, sleeping better and eating well. There is the monumental task of better understanding the biological  mechanisms  that  make  firefighters  ill.  Added  to  that  mix  are  fire service cultural issues that may resist beneficial equipment and behavioral changes. And there are political and legal forces at play in  the  battle  to  decide  what  impact  firefighting  has  on  our  health  and  when  benefits  are  awarded  to  those  with  job-related  health  problems. In this brief guide from FireRescue1 and Fire Chief, we’ve zeroed in on firefighter cancer. We begin with a piece that helps explain some of the latest research on firefighter cancer. We follow that up with two pieces on how firefighters can protect themselves with their PPE. This guide will provide you with information on: • 8 ways to protect against cancer with PPE • How to rid firefighting PPE of contaminants • Featured resource: Cardiovascular & Chemical Exposure Risks in Modern Firefighting Interim Report – Summary Fill out my online...
Submit Your Photo to our FEETS OF STRENGTH Sweepstakes!

Submit Your Photo to our FEETS OF STRENGTH Sweepstakes!

Look at some of the great entries we’ve gotten so far: Globe wants to extend our thanks to the firefighting community and celebrate the strength of firefighters with this photo sweepstakes. Have a cool photo of yourself in the field or helping your community? Submit it for a chance to win! There are still multiple pairs of boots to win in the following categories: Atheleticism, Charity, Family. Submit your photo by 2/1/16 for a chance to win a pair of Globe boots. To enter the contest, enter...
New download: Free ‘Future Firefighter PPE Trends’ Report

New download: Free ‘Future Firefighter PPE Trends’ Report

This exclusive report looks at current and predicted trends in firefighter protective clothing A firefighter’s personal protective equipment is often the last line of defense keeping the firefighter safe from the hazards of fire and rescue scenes. Those hazards are rapidly changing and increasing — so too are the technology and regulations surrounding PPE. With this free guide, you’ll learn: • Which is more important to firefighters: protection from cancer or from violent attacks? • What are the key revisions considered for the next NFPA standards? • What are the six priorities for PPE in the coming years? • What are firefighters’ biggest complaints about PPE? • How can you influence NFPA’s standards process? Fill out my online...