Can YOU take the Heat?
2) Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate, and then drink some water.
This is the simplest and most effective way to keep yourself upright: drink more than you think you need, and then have another glass. Dehydration is much easier to prevent than it is to treat, and you have no excuse not to do it. First thing in the morning, drink a bottle of water. Have another glass as soon as you get to work, and another immediately afterwards. There’s nothing complicated about this, but it is TOO EASY TO OVERLOOK. Both of my heat stress episodes in recruit class could probably have been prevented if I’d been hydrating all day before hand.
3) Take rehab seriously!
You can extend your working endurance significantly by doing what experts call "Active Cooling.” “Passive Cooling” is what we already do: we take most of our gear off and sit in the shade for a few minutes to recuperate before donning everything and going back in. “Active Cooling” is when you’re doing something to actively lower your core temperature, like using an ice pack or some other cooling agent. What these researchers have found to be particularly effective and pragmatic for an active fire scene is this: set a large tub in the shade, and fill it with water from the firehose. When you’re rehabbing, submerge your hands and forearms for a few minutes in the tank. This is a quick way to lower your body temperature, and it is an order of magnitude more effective than just doffing some gear. It could mean the difference between success and failure when you go back in for your next tactic.
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