For Firefighters, Danger Heightens In Higher Temps

By: Ryan Smith Email
By: Ryan Smith Email

Topeka, KAN. (WIBW)—For firefighters, the danger of the job heightens with the outside temperatures.

"Most of us have wife, kids at home. You don't think about going home the next day. You do your job, even though this is a career where you might not go home the next day,” said Topeka firefighter Ryan Gay.

This extreme heat forces firefighters to take extra precautions. Hot weather might have contributed to the death of captain Tony Cox. Cox suffered a heart attack during an August 2007 fire.

"See one of your buddies is down. That’s real stressful, got to prepare yourself that that could happen to you in these temps,” said Gay.

What’s dangerous, firefighters say, is the very items that can save their lives. They pack on up to 75 pounds of equipment every time they battle a blaze. In 100 degree heat, that extra material could cause a heat-related illness.

“This gear right here, you're going to sweat. Even if it's 50 degrees, you're sweating. So when it's 110, you're drenched,” said Gay.


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