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Why Wear it? Just Take it Off!

The following is not directed towards the department in the video but to everyone.

The video below shows a small house with some fire. By all accounts, the firefighters did a decent job knocking down the fire and I would imagine there was more fire prior to this video beginning recording.

What I found humorous was the commentary coming from near the camera. I don’t know who it is but most of it seemed like unnecessary micromanagement (if it came from an officer). If it came from a spectator I would have soaked them to shut them up.

What I wanted to talk about is the firefighters who wore SCBA packs on their backs but didn’t utilize the clean air contained inside and rather breathed the toxic smoke. I don’t know about you but I find this disturbing.

We all know that it is impossible to work on the fireground without breathing in at least a little smoke, but this seems idiotic.

Maybe they didn’t get the memo about smoke causing cancer…especially smoke from all that stuff which might be burning in a house.

I recommend using the SCBA and breathing the clean air inside…or just taking the pack off. Why wear it if you aren’t going to use it. They were put on the rigs for a reason.

I grew out of that macho, smoke breathing, invisible, can’t hurt me mindset a long time ago. I realized that if I am going to make a life of being a firefighter and still try to live a long life and enjoy my family that I should decrease all risks I have control over.

The point is where the pack and use it!. Breathe the clean air, and decrease your chances of getting all the cancers which have killed firefighters for years.

On the flip side of the coin is how in the world can firefighters fight for presumptive cancer benefits when we have video showing actions such as these. It would be hard to argue your case for presumptive laws if the other side of the aisle is streaming video like this.

The video:

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  • chiefreason

    You know: our OSHA regional office told us in a meeting that they regularly visit YouTube and other sites for violations. It's saving them big bucks in fuel costs.
    Stupid is the word that comes to mind. “Ah; it's just a routine fire, no biggie. We can slob this one”.
    Judging by the construction, shingles are asphalt/creosote type. Any insulation will contain asbestos. Both are very good reasons to be protected.
    Nozzle guy is a REAL smokeeater. No hood, no eye protection, helmet shield isn't down and of course, “we don't need to be on no stinking breathing air”.
    Is it any wonder that we are doing so many charity benefits for cancer-strickened firefighters?

  • Scott J Helm

    we dont breath air untill we absolutly need it !! the breath you waist by “yard Breathing ” might me the one you need to get your self out of a situation !!

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  • chiefreason

    You know: our OSHA regional office told us in a meeting that they regularly visit YouTube and other sites for violations. It's saving them big bucks in fuel costs.
    Stupid is the word that comes to mind. “Ah; it's just a routine fire, no biggie. We can slob this one”.
    Judging by the construction, shingles are asphalt/creosote type. Any insulation will contain asbestos. Both are very good reasons to be protected.
    Nozzle guy is a REAL smokeeater. No hood, no eye protection, helmet shield isn't down and of course, “we don't need to be on no stinking breathing air”.
    Is it any wonder that we are doing so many charity benefits for cancer-strickened firefighters?

  • Scott J Helm

    we dont breath air untill we absolutly need it !! the breath you waist by “yard Breathing ” might me the one you need to get your self out of a situation !!

  • Tony

    Dont breathe air when you are going into a working fire? While you flames and alot of smoke Just retarded my firefighter 1 class will LOVE this for EVERYTHING NOT to do! I think they about hit it all and also if you look closely the guy inside with the nozzle and air pack didnt even have it straped around the waist! HMMMMMMMMMMM Retards! Glad they arent around me!

  • http://www.pcfirenews.com Mike

    Well Scott, I'm glad you aren't in my department. I guess I wasn't aware that smoke was only hazardous while inside a building. Sounds like you must belong to the department in the video. The “leather lung” days are over. Get with it and live to fight another day.

  • TheFireCritic

    Scott, I am not talking about yardbreathers…and yes every department has them. I am talking about breathing that good air contained in the SCBA bottles while inside that house that is burning. Breathing in that smoke is just idiotic.

  • joelkelley

    You know, you're right, in act let's just take the SCBA off the apparatus, nobody wears them anyway, at least not in Gary Indiana. Could save some budget cutbacks. Hey while we're at it, let's get rid of all that costly bunker gear too, since protecting the body from fire means more than protecting the lungs. Helmets? Don't need those either, since Those guys are fireproof and immune to collapses. This new video proves to the civil bean counters that the Gary, Indiana Fire Department is wasting the budget money it spends on PPE, so just take it away and save the money. How will they be able to keep their credibility at budget time when they don't properly use the equipment they have in place. Request denied!

    Our county budget is so small, only the paid companies get SCBA. The volunteers would be really gratified to have the problem that Gary, Indiana has, that of tooo much equipment to use all at once!

  • joelkelley

    You know, you're right, in act let's just take the SCBA off the apparatus, nobody wears them anyway, at least not in Gary Indiana. Could save some budget cutbacks. Hey while we're at it, let's get rid of all that costly bunker gear too, since protecting the body from fire means more than protecting the lungs. Helmets? Don't need those either, since Those guys are fireproof and immune to collapses. This new video proves to the civil bean counters that the Gary, Indiana Fire Department is wasting the budget money it spends on PPE, so just take it away and save the money. How will they be able to keep their credibility at budget time when they don't properly use the equipment they have in place. Request denied!

    Our county budget is so small, only the paid companies get SCBA. The volunteers would be really gratified to have the problem that Gary, Indiana has, that of tooo much equipment to use all at once!

  • jeffcarnes

    I came into the FS when leather lungs was just going out of style. Wear it and use it. Damage done to the lungs last long after retirement. They pay you to fight fire not suffer from lung disease. wjc

  • jeffcarnes

    I came into the FS when leather lungs was just going out of style. Wear it and use it. Damage done to the lungs last long after retirement. They pay you to fight fire not suffer from lung disease. wjc

  • Sasquatch

    Are you kidding? It would be chicken s**t to use air in any part of that video. Yes, I said it. Go ahead and bash me. If you want to be a fireman, your gonna breathe a little smoke. And yes, I'd think you were a candy-ass for wearing it in this situation. For Chrissake, it's not supposed to be babysitting. It's f**king firefighting!

  • TheFireCritic

    It is just unfortunate that we have firefighters inside breathing smoke when they have SCBA packs on. All the while we have firefighters fighting tooth and nail to get presumptive laws passed for known occupational cancers.

    Again…not talking about yard breathing. I am talking about being inside a structure and breathing in all that nasty stuff when we don't have to.

  • Sasquatch

    Are you kidding? It would be chicken s**t to use air in any part of that video. Yes, I said it. Go ahead and bash me. If you want to be a fireman, your gonna breathe a little smoke. And yes, I'd think you were a candy-ass for wearing it in this situation. For Chrissake, it's not supposed to be babysitting. It's f**king firefighting!

  • TheFireCritic

    It is just unfortunate that we have firefighters inside breathing smoke when they have SCBA packs on. All the while we have firefighters fighting tooth and nail to get presumptive laws passed for known occupational cancers.

    Again…not talking about yard breathing. I am talking about being inside a structure and breathing in all that nasty stuff when we don't have to.

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  • YOUR Mom!

    I'm a mom of 2 firefighters & I will only tell you this one time, and one time only – so hear up – WEAR YOUR SCBA & PROTECTIVE GEAR (and yes I am yelling!)
    Got it?

  • sasquach

    Thats part of the problem “Mom”. Too many “men” letting thier mothers telling them what to do. Sorry, my comment and my opinion stand!

  • sasquach

    Im not saying dont wear it. I dont remotely claim to have leather lungs. Im saying that Im seeing the job sissyfied. Yes sissyfied. The job is dangerous. GET OVER IT!

  • sasquach

    Why don't all you guys get another job? Interior decorator? Mall cop? I've been seeing all these super sparky guys come on in the last 20 years or so and they all talk the talk. But getting dirty and shitty and maybe breathing a liitle smoke? Better call OSHA!

  • YOUR Mom!

    Dear Mr Sasquach,
    Thank you for your response to my post – I hear what you are saying – for the most part I am hard core & old school. I have been an adrenaline junkie my whole life but believe you me, I'll pack my own chute thank you. It is not sissie to be smart to stay healthy/safe so you can play another day. I don't think smokeeating will ever be a problem for you but do watch your blood pressure. Give your mom my regards and happy holidays.

    PS I came to this link by way of Chief Trevino's story after escorting my friend to her hubby's funeral (ret Cap) It's not only the FF who pays the price. It is a dangerous job – thank you for what you do.

  • http://firecritic.com Fire Critic

    Your point of sissified fire service is not befitting of this post. This post is about minimizing the exposure to known carcinogenic particles in smoke. There is too much working against us already.

  • buckebc

    Dear Sasquach you have no idea what it's like to have your head bolted to a table and radiation beamed in to your neck tell your head gets hot! but with your attitude I am sure someday you will. If someone told me I would get throat cancer before 40 I would have work at McDonald's.
    You are standing in the Que!
    A survivor in Canada

  • buckebc

    Dear Sasquach you have no idea what it's like to have your head bolted to a table and radiation beamed in to your neck tell your head gets hot! but with your attitude I am sure someday you will. If someone told me I would get throat cancer before 40 I would have work at McDonald's.
    You are standing in the Que!
    A survivor in Canada

  • http://www.texas-fire.com/ Mookie

    That is a whelming video. Not over or under, just whelming. I'm glad we use modern technology to capture the vivid heart pounding realities of the day to day abandoned garage fire in Gary, Indiana.

    @Mom – thank you for caring. Somebody has to watch out for us (I'm serious; not being a smart ass). Generally speaking, sicking the mother of a firefighter is a tried and proven method of management with no repercussions to the employee. Going to the funeral of a friend or co-worker taken by cancer feels no better than attending the funeral of a friend or co-worker hit by a bus. Funerals suck because, by definition, somebody died.

    @Squatch – I kinda agree with you; if your being serious. That was a lame ass, cancel the Box, we'll handle B.S. fire. I wouldn't of worn my pack either. And I hope the kids keep working on presumptive cancer laws; they should get them passed right about the time you and me and the 'rest of us who are tougher than them' die. 19 years ago in the academy, my instructors assured me I was a wimp, and that all of my generation were wimps. They also assured me that the more things change, the more they stay the same. I work with kids now that cough at the bar-b-q pit. It doesn't give me a lot of hope for the future; but it doesn't make me right either. It just makes me old. You should put your pack on…..

    @FireCritic – Your right. If an old firefighter is going to wear the air pack as an example to the young ones, the face piece is (as far as I know) still a required piece of it. If they ain't gonna wear all of it, they should lighten the load and leave it all off.

    Please laugh. All of you. I love you all. Squatch, me and Mom will come to your funeral and kick the shit out of the rookies that cry. That should about get it, right ?

  • http://www.texas-fire.com/ Mookie

    That is a whelming video. Not over or under, just whelming. I'm glad we use modern technology to capture the vivid heart pounding realities of the day to day abandoned garage fire in Gary, Indiana.

    @Mom – thank you for caring. Somebody has to watch out for us (I'm serious; not being a smart ass). Generally speaking, sicking the mother of a firefighter is a tried and proven method of management with no repercussions to the employee. Going to the funeral of a friend or co-worker taken by cancer feels no better than attending the funeral of a friend or co-worker hit by a bus. Funerals suck because, by definition, somebody died.

    @Squatch – I kinda agree with you; if your being serious. That was a lame ass, cancel the Box, we'll handle B.S. fire. I wouldn't of worn my pack either. And I hope the kids keep working on presumptive cancer laws; they should get them passed right about the time you and me and the 'rest of us who are tougher than them' die. 19 years ago in the academy, my instructors assured me I was a wimp, and that all of my generation were wimps. They also assured me that the more things change, the more they stay the same. I work with kids now that cough at the bar-b-q pit. It doesn't give me a lot of hope for the future; but it doesn't make me right either. It just makes me old. You should put your pack on…..

    @FireCritic – Your right. If an old firefighter is going to wear the air pack as an example to the young ones, the face piece is (as far as I know) still a required piece of it. If they ain't gonna wear all of it, they should lighten the load and leave it all off.

    Please laugh. All of you. I love you all. Squatch, me and Mom will come to your funeral and kick the shit out of the rookies that cry. That should about get it, right ?

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  • alankinne

    Once you step inside that structure with all that smoke, you need the air! Sorry, but they went beyond being yard breathers once they entered.

  • alankinne

    Firefighting involves using your head, and not just to hold your helmet!! Obviously you know nothing about it.

  • alankinne

    Once you step inside that structure with all that smoke, you need the air! Sorry, but they went beyond being yard breathers once they entered.

  • alankinne

    Firefighting involves using your head, and not just to hold your helmet!! Obviously you know nothing about it.