Windsor workers brave sweltering heat
While most of us are finding ways to cool down amid the first heat wave of the summer, first responders are running towards the heat.
“Fire emergencies don’t take a break,” said Windsor Fire’s chief prevention officer Mike Coste.
When responding to any call, firefighters dress up in protective gear from head to toe. The layers and equipment can weigh as much as 70 pounds.
“It’s like putting your snowsuit on and wearing it in the middle of the summer. They have no choice,” Coste described.
Considering the hot temperatures brewing inside their gear, Coste says it’s common for firefighters to lose around five to seven pounds of water weight after responding to a fire.
“Firefighters keep hydrated all day,” he said. “They drink Gatorade and water all day.”
Hydration is also crucial for workers at Allstar Roofing.
“We eat lots of cucumber and drink lots of water. We are always covered in UPF clothing and wear a sunshade on the brim of our hard hat,” Allstar Roofing owner Nigel Poag shared of his tips.
Paog says it takes time to get acclimated to working in the heat and he doesn’t send new employees out on hot days.
“We’re extremely conditioned for this day,” he said. “You can’t just start roofing on a day like this. You have to build up to it.”
Meanwhile, fire officials have a reminder for those taking part in a different type of conditioning — air conditioning.
“Make sure your air conditioning units are plugged into the proper outlets,” Coste said. “Make sure your plugs and cords are not underneath carpets.”