By its very nature, firefighting is a stressful occupation. Firefighters regularly exert themselves in dangerous and unpredictable environments. Merely getting ready to respond to a fire starts a flow of endorphins and begins putting stress on the cardiovascular system. Combine that with the extra weight of thick and heavy firefighting gear and it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the leading cause of line-of-duty deaths and injuries is sudden cardiac death, which accounts for approximately half.
New research from the American Heart Association shows that exposure to extreme heat and physical exertion during firefighting may trigger the formation of blood clots and impair blood vessel function, two predictors for increased risk of heart attack. Blood clotting is an exaggerated normal physiological response to both extreme heat and physical exertion.
Staying hydrated and allowing time to properly cool down can help in preventing cardiac events—and so can wearing the right firefighting gear.
At Fire-Dex, we design our gear with cardiovascular safety in mind. Our FXR Turnout Gear is the lightest ensemble on the domestic market. Its ergonomic design enhances the wearer’s ability to move freely, with design elements chosen to minimize firefighter stress and fatigue.
FXR turnout gear featuring our exclusive outer shell TECGEN71 offers the lightest weight composite systems available. TECGEN71 was designed to lessen heat stress by reducing weight and flexibility without sacrificing thermal protection or durability. It’s 15 percent lighter, 40 percent thinner and 70 percent more flexible than typical combinations, while boasting 48 percent higher total heat loss.