Most of us are aware that technology is becoming increasingly prevalent. Almost every firefighter has a smart phone with impressive computing powers and the ability to provide extensive amounts of data upon demand. But, how does advancing technology affect the fire service? More importantly, how could technology make the fire service safer?
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.
As you’ve probably noticed, there is a recent trend towards lightweight systems for turnout gear. Along with that trend, many fabric suppliers are shifting their focus towards the stiffness, or conversely the flexibility, of their fabrics being offered as part of these new lightweight systems. Anyone can easily perceive if a fabric is extremely stiff or flexible. But there’s a long-standing scientific test method that is used to determine, objectively, even the smallest differences in fabric flexibility. This article will explain how labs are using that test method to assign a standard quantitative value for stiffness to the new fabrics coming onto the market.
We were recently invited by the U.S. Department of Commerce and the Industrial Fabrics Association International to speak at the first-ever Smart Fabrics Summit in Washington, DC. Advances in technology have enabled the development of “smart fabrics,” with the capability to interact with their user or environment, including by tracking and communicating data about their wearer or environment to other devices through embedded sensors and conductive yarns.
It’s all the rage today to talk about how your company listens to its customers. In business school, they call it “market in” rather than “product out” thinking. But at Globe, it’s what we do all day, every day. And we’ve been doing it for a long time.
There’s been a lot of talk for a lot of years about the problem. Stress and overexertion combine with a host of physiological and environmental factors to trigger cardiac events in firefighters that result in 50% of line of duty deaths and an even larger number of disabilities. With all the advancements in personal protection, operational tactics, and training, this is still an alarming fact.
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