Heat Stress Management
Firefighters face a broad range of environments that contribute to heat stress, particularly warmer conditions and those with radiant heat. You absolutely need protection against extreme heat, but the vast majority of your calls don’t involve this kind of challenge. Nevertheless heat is still a problem. For instance, the heat from an asphalt highway when working at an accident scene, or when venting a rooftop on a sunny day. Working in turnout gear in these kinds of conditions is tough on your body. The heat stress associated with them can be severe, causing elevated heart rate, raised body core temperature, and accelerated dehydration, potentially leading to impaired decision-making and heat exhaustion events.
Yet, the NFPA 1971 Standard doesn’t currently address performance in different environments – particularly the warmer and low-level radiant environments which pose significant heat stress risk. So until now, gear selection has been done without this new additional information.
Gore, a leader in comfort science, does consider the performance of different materials and technologies in broader conditions, like hotter environments and exposure to the sun. For example, exploring how working hard in these types of conditions might impact body core temperature and the potential for heat exhaustion.
Your job is tough, and no gear can change that. But turnout gear with CROSSTECH® moisture barriers helps reduce the burden and decrease the risks associated with heat stress.
You work in all types of conditions...so should your gear!