Health & Safety Resolutions, Inspired By Research

As we get closer to 2017, many readers are making New Year’s resolutions. Maybe it is to exercise more, eat healthier, or take a training class. For firefighters, any of these resolutions could help you have a healthier, safer 2017, but the best resolutions are the ones you keep, and sometimes it is better to have a little more specificity. In anticipation of the 2017 results from the Illinois Fire Service Institute Cardiovascular And Chemical Exposure Project, we’ve gathered five firefighter resolutions that you can take right now. We formed these resolutions using early research findings expressed at the June 2016 IFSI roundtable of fire service experts curated by Globe and Fireengineering.com. Watch The Video: Five Resolutions For Firefighters 1. Improve Decon (don’t forget your hands) Decontamination of hands and proper hygiene can help you avoid accidental exposure to carcinogens through food or skin. 2. Prioritize cleanup of skin While cleaning gear and equipment is important, cleaning your skin should take priority. 3. Wear SCBA Utilize your protective equipment any time you may be exposed to smoke or fumes. Exposure happens on the fire ground even outside of a building. 4. Take personal responsibility Change starts with you. Assume the responsibility and make health-conscious choices for yourself and your fellow firefighters. 5. Add “health” to Health & Safety Seek out preventative care and opportunities for early screening and detection. Prepare your body to best face the risks associated with firefighting. Need more ideas? Download The Impact of PPE on Firefighter Health and Safety guide...
Upcoming Webinar: Cardiovascular & Chemical Exposure Risk Studies

Upcoming Webinar: Cardiovascular & Chemical Exposure Risk Studies

We’re sponsoring a National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) webinar on Thursday, November 17: Cardiovascular & Chemical Exposure Risk Studies at IFSI Research. Conducted by Gavin Horn, PhD, Director of Research, this webinar will provide a high level overview of recent studies conducted at IFSI Research along with partners from UL FSRI and NIOSH to characterize some of the leading health risks on today’s fireground and training ground. Studies will be described and initial results shared as well as a description of where to find more information as it is released. The webinar will be at 1:00 PM ET. While NVFC is hosting the webinar for its members, anyone can register and...
3 Things that Make Globe Boots Safer and the Science that Proves Why

3 Things that Make Globe Boots Safer and the Science that Proves Why

By Rob Freese, Sr. Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Globe When we got into the leather fire boot business 10 years ago, people told me it was a mature and saturated market. Little did they know where our imagination would take us. That’s because we listen to what you, the firefighter, tell us you need to perform your duties effectively and safely. And then, as part of our product development process, we rely on science to study exactly how the human body moves. Boot Construction For years, all firefighter boots were made of rubber. They were waterproof, but they were also hot, heavy, and clunky. In the 80s, advances in materials made the development of a new kind of fire boot possible – constructed with leather on the outside and a waterproof, breathable bootie on the inside. They were lighter, more comfortable, and a huge improvement. Some leather fire boots are made with Goodyear welt (stitched) construction. The end product is a boot that is flat as a pancake and stiff as a board. The stiffness is a consequence of the welt construction method in combination with the steel plate. Boots made with athletic footwear (cement) construction are flexible like your feet. Your feet are designed to flex 50 degrees. If your boot doesn’t flex 50 degrees, then your movement will be restricted. Other leather fire boots are made with a hybrid construction method. It starts with a cup outsole like athletic footwear construction but uses a creased steel plate along the bottom and then injects urethane foam. Again, these boots are stiff by the very nature...
[Video] WASP™ at Firefighter Combat Challenge

[Video] WASP™ at Firefighter Combat Challenge

Globe’s WASP™ (Wearable Advanced Sensor Platform) is put to the test at the Firefighter Combat Challenge. WASP™ addresses two critical problems identified on the InterAgency Board’s (IAB) R&D Priority List: Emergency Responder Body-Worn Integrated Electronics System Development and 3D Tracking of Personnel. Firefighters experience extreme physiological stress during the course of their duties. According to the U.S. Fire Administration, stress and overexertion account for 50% or more of firefighter line of duty deaths. Factors that affect firefighter physiological responses include exertion of work performed, elevated thermal environment, wearing heavily insulated protective clothing, carrying heavy equipment, as well as individual health status, fitness level, medication, and hydration level. Firefighters are also exposed to extreme hazards during the course of emergency response. WASP ™ provides a tool for incident commanders to track the location of team members to improve situational awareness and potentially shorten the time needed for a RIT team to rescue a downed firefighter. Learn more about WASP™...
New download: “How to choose the right firefighting boot”

New download: “How to choose the right firefighting boot”

Evaluating and selecting the right firefighting boot may seem like a daunting task for some. As a rule of thumb, you want to select a structural firefighting boot that fits, performs and lasts. With this free guide from FireRescue1, Fire Chief and Globe, we take a look at what’s going on to improve both protection and functionality in firefighter footwear, what has been learned from recent studies and how to apply that information to your next boot selection. This guide will give you essential tips and advice for how to: • Select the safest structural firefighting boots • Look at the science behind firefighter boot choices • Balance footwear function with protection Fill out my online...
Does firefighter PPE need another breathability test?

Does firefighter PPE need another breathability test?

Over the past two decades, firefighting protective clothing has transformed from being relatively heavy with rubberized layers to being more sleek, form-fitting and lighter. Some of this transformation came about because years ago stress-related fatalities and injuries were the number one risk facing firefighters. And that partly came about due to the excessive weight and bulk of the gear. Those involved in the turnout clothing business evolved new materials and gear designs to lessen those burdens without sacrificing protection. In the 1980s and 1990s, turnout gear took the form of multi-layered clothing that consisted of the primary layers of an outer shell, a moisture barrier and a thermal barrier. The outer shell layer provided the principal physical and flame protection by being rugged and resistant to the effects of moderate duration high-heat exposure. The moisture barrier actually started out as a vapor barrier. It was intended to prevent water, hot and cold, and lessen steam penetration to the inner thermal barrier, which was the primary insulating layer against heat. Most fire department buying decisions were based on the newly introduced material composite thermal protective performance (TPP) test that indicated clothing’s overall thermal insulation. The argument was that firefighter protection was improved with increasing TPP values. However, this had significant penalties in that it created severe burdens on the firefighter. While it provided protection during structural firefighting, it encumbered firefighters on the way to the first scene or in other non-structural firefighting activities. The extra stress that this heavy clothing imposed created a significant physiological impact on firefighters and became a hazard to their overall health and well-being. Seeking balance...