1. #1
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    Default how can you stand it????

    I have a stupid question for some of you northern ffs
    how do you deal with the weather this time of year? In north
    Fla it gets down in the teens every once in a great while, and
    when we have fires I am cold for 2 days afterwards. Then I look
    at the pictures in FH and see ice hanging from your helmets.
    How do you deal with it? How many layers of clothes can you
    wear under your turnouts and still function? I was born in
    upstate NY but left while in Jr High school. I remember the
    cold and snow, I cant imagine what you go through.

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    To be honest, I often wonder how you guys deal with the heat. While I generally prefer warm weather to cold weather, I don't when it comes to firefighting. I've found its easier to stay warm than to stay cool. Other than that, its just a matter of knowing the tricks.
    TW
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    Staying warm in your gear is just a matter of keeping moving. If you just sit there like a bump on a log, you feet and hands will get cold. Putting on your hood and keeping the cloth flap in the back of your helmet down help too. Fasten the velcro on the neck collar of your coat if so equiped.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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    Actually, we let the Thermal Barrier keep us warm. We're usually naked under our turnouts.

    Seriously; you just have to prepare the best you can. Know the forecasted temperature and set out warm clothes before retiring for the night. Layer your clothing. Keep extra, dry clothes in your vehicle, so if you do get wet, and cold, you at least have dry clothes to get into upon return to the station. Carry spare gloves in your gear. Many Departments are routinely activating mutual aid for manpower during extremely cold weather during a large incident. Rotating personnel and having a squad or bus available to thaw guys out helps too. Any major incident with a temperature below 32 degrees can cause major hypothermia if you get wet
    "The uniform is supposed to say something about you. You get it for nothing, but it comes with a history, so do the right thing when you're in it."
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    Not too many companies take relief in the winter months.

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    I love this cold weather. And I don't really wear anything extra under my turnouts, maybe a sweatshirt but usually only a tshirt. Simply because the turnouts keep me relatively warm and the last thing I need is something else weighing me down or reducing my mobility.

    I really don't know how you guys deal with the heat and humidity all year round. It just takes the life right out of you. I'll take a job on a 15 degree night anytime over an afternoon with 100 degrees and 80% humidity.

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    Originally posted by firefiftyfive
    I'll take a job on a 15 degree night anytime over an afternoon with 100 degrees and 80% humidity.
    Agreed 100%!

    That was my first thought too is I hate fighting fires in the summer and I would rather do it in colder weather then warmer weather anyday.

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    I agree with the others here. I can take the cold a lot better
    than the heat. I don't wear anymore than a sweatshirt on the coldest nights. Just have plenty of dry gloves! The biggest problems with cold weather fires are FF safety and equipment failure. Have to be very carefull with ice buildup on the scene. Nothing like climbing an ice covered ladder or sliding halfway across the yard holding a hose.
    Unused lines, truck valves, and compartment doors soon freeze and you have a mess.
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    Originally posted by DanTCFD


    Agreed 100%!

    That was my first thought too is I hate fighting fires in the summer and I would rather do it in colder weather then warmer weather anyday.
    here here .
    Summer time kills me especially with grass fires. Thank goodness for the rehab rig with the cold a/c and beverages .
    Winter time is just right with the weight of the TOG that keeps me just right with jeans and a t-shirt underneath

    BTW DanTCFD how are 102 and 103 working out for u guys ?

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    Default Summertime fires are a bummer

    You have fires in the summertime? One of the tricks I was thought is if has a woodstove, keep it going. I carry extra, socks, gloves and a hood in a jump bag, on the truck. For the real cold nights I keep a knit cap and Coco sipping mittens handy. Also if you get enough Ice and snow on you it tends to insulate you from the cold better.
    “Just when you think something is made to be Idiot Proof. They go a head and make a better Idiot”

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    Neman,

    You mean like this....

    "Throw another log on Billy Bob, sure is cold today."
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    Look at three of your friends, if they are ok, your it.

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    It's always hot inside by the fire.

    Seriously, extra gloves and socks on the trucks for replacing your wet ones. Engine operators have had it the worst as they are outside the whole time at the pump panel. They have a few hand warmer packs they put inside their gloves. Nomex hoods help keep you warm also. No standing around, keep moving, keep rotating crews.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

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    Originally posted by k1500chevy97


    BTW DanTCFD how are 102 and 103 working out for u guys ?
    They're great trucks we really like them. On board foam is real nice, preconnected Hurst tools are awesome. It has a real nice layout and I personally really like the look of them. You can check out some pictures from them at the New England Fire Chief's Show: http://www.tcfd.com/photos/index.php...4ec0fc729537e8

    Thanks for asking! Take Care.
    -Dan

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    I agree, I can take the cold much better than the heat. Instead of a tshirt under the gear, maybe a sweatshirt. I also have wool socks for the winter too. Spare gloves and a spare hood are a must. Keep moving really is the key. Try not to get wet but if you do stay moving.

    It kinda becomes a pain with things freezing. Watch out for ice build up on bumpers and stuff. Gotta keep some water flowing through the line as well otherwise that will freeze. We carry a can of salt/sand mix we spread on the steps of the house and around trucks, etc so we don't fall and break our crown.

    Keep your head down and your powder dry.
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    100 degrees and 80% humidity... those number can be a little low at times here in my neck of the woods. 110 easily in the summer... with all the humidity variations. That can be a bear... you're often sweating before you even get off the front ramp.

    I have to say, after a long hot summer here, I look forward to winter fires. It feels great when you come out and take off your coat.... well for about 15 minutes. Then your looking for something else to do to warm up again.

    I guess it's just one of those deals... you live in that area, so you're pretty much used to the weather there, fire or no fire. I would probably freeze like a popcycle up north in the winter, and some of you northern guys would probably be ready to go home after fighting fire in 110-115 degree heat here. I've lived here all my life and I still dread the first fire after it gets hot here... after that I usually acclimate to it real fast.
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    Thanks for all the replies. The heat in the summer is bad
    but like you we learn to adapt. Thankfully we have
    A/C on my engine. I also use the helmet full of water trick.
    and lots of drinking water. stay warm ya'll

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    Complaining of the heat...complaining of the cold... what has my beloved Fire Service come to? LOL

    Like anything else...you deal with it...overcome, adapt,Improvise and survive!
    ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
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    Heck it was 27 degrees with the wind chill this morning and I just had on a t-shirt and shorts under my bunkers....perfect weather .

    Like has been said keep moving and extra gear is a good idea, and only take soemthing if iff you have to, then you better have something dry to put on to replace it. And you would be surprised how much heat comes out of the exhaust of a tail pipe on a engine that is pumping . We also have these "winter treads" things that go on our bunker boots. They strap in...I'll have to look and see who makes them. But they work great and they last about 2-3 winters.
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    A couple tricks that I've learned ...

    Extra lined leather gloves (two or three pairs) kept in your pockets inside a zip-lock bag (preferably the thick, freezer bags) to keep them dry.

    Neoprene gloves (Galls Item# GL152)- keep your hands warm while dry or wet.

    Once your gear gets wet, do NOT go anywhere to warm up (back of the rescue, etc.). If it's cold enough, the water will freeze in/on the outer shell, and you'll never know the difference. Once you go inside to warm up, the ice melts and you become thoroughly soaked.

    Stay Safe
    Last edited by PAVolunteer; 12-12-2003 at 01:11 PM.

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    Mind over matter. Think warm thoughts.
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    Talking The rear step days

    Open canopy cab cold? Try riding the rear step at 20 below and snowing so hard that the driver can only see about 500 ft. and its a four mile response. You forget the grab bar and tuck your hands and possibly your head under the hose bed cover then hope the driver doesn't hit a big bump in the road. Not fun but we did it and put out fires. You have it soft now but I think do a better and safer job.

    Stay safe,

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    Having replied once already in this thread, I have noticed that many of the replies refer to current situations.
    pete892 brought up a good point as to what did our forebrothers do in the old days?

    Open canopy cab cold? Try riding the rear step at 20 below and snowing so hard that the driver can only see about 500 ft. and its a four mile response. You forget the grab bar and tuck your hands and possibly your head under the hose bed cover then hope the driver doesn't hit a big bump in the road. Not fun but we did it and put out fires. You have it soft now but I think do a better and safer job.
    I rode tailboards when I started and can say that it got DAMN COLD back there. The old rubber coats and boots would freeze stiff, the old rubber (orange) gloves (besides not feeling your fingers, you couldn't grip anything anyways),would freeze,
    I know I'm going off here, and this is an already posted thread
    No ear flaps in the helmets, etc, etc, etc.. And these are times that a few of us still around can remember. Just stop and think what it was like in the real old days.

    Pete 892, one other thing; My first Department didn't have hose bed covers !
    "The uniform is supposed to say something about you. You get it for nothing, but it comes with a history, so do the right thing when you're in it."
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    Originally posted by drkblram
    hey dan, to bad you never got to ride on a canopy cab apparatus in the winter, it makes you appreciate enclosed cabs. Especially when the box is higher than the cab, so the wind rolls right back onto you.

    Speaking of the foam on the new engines, did you guys use foam for overhaul at the fires on old town and cambridge and at the other one off resevior ave?
    Yea, only thing I've ridden is a custom! The raised roofs are really nice feature also!
    We have used foam for every fire they've faced. All car fires (it's Class B foam right now) and the two house fires you're talking about. We didn't wait for overhaul, we went right at the initial attack of the fire with foam as well. Really stopped the fire quick from what I hear. Old Town and Cambridge same thing. It really speeds up the knockdown process a lot!

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    You wanna see cold? Check out the Cover of the December issue of Scanning USA. I shivered for 2 days after I got it in the mail.
    http://www.scanningusa.com/
    *notice he's got a coffee cup in both hands trying to keep that core temp up.

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