Im no doctor, but I can tell you right here and now that if you are overweight or otherwise limited in what level of physical activity you can perform, you need to think about how that can have a dramatic negative effect on you, your fellow firefighters and your fire company.
THE FIRE SCENE >>> By JOHN J. SALKA Jr. Are You Fit? Are You Really Up to the Physical Demands of Firefighting? A re you fit? You know what I department for assistance, they need you out and to the hospital. Your absence mean. Are you ready to stretch help. If you are on the apparatus that ar- could contribute to a family losing their a hoseline, conduct a search or rives at a house fire at 2 A.M., you may be home or another firefighter being injured vent a roof at a house fire tonight? Can the one ordered to gear up and enter the or worse. Nobody will complain about you wear your bunker gear for the time house for a primary search. You could any of this because they will be more it takes to respond to, operate at and also be the firefighter concerned about you wind down at a structural fire without going into respiratory distress? Can selected to lead a search through rough terrain Attention than them. The last group you you put on your bunker pants without sitting down? Would your family doc- for a lost child or the person selected to jump firefighters: let down when you are out of service is your tor allow you to be an active member down into a confined company or depart- of your fire company if he or she knew space to assist with the I’m trying to save ment. I’m sure you are what activities are involved and the rescue of a trapped con- an active and influential amount of physical exertion that could struction worker. It’s not your life. member of your com- be required? all about you. There are pany and you probably I’m not criticizing you; I’m trying a lot of other folks out If you’re not are involved in many to save your life. If you are not fit for the there depending greatly aspects of the organi- physical activities required for struc- tural firefighting, you need to do one of on your stamina, ability and fitness to save them physically fit, zation. When you are not around, there is a the following: get in shape or find a job or activity that you can perform that or their home. Let’s take a look at get yourself in vacuum of ideas and in- spiration. If you’re gone does not threaten your life. each of these important forever, your input, I’m no doctor, but I can tell you right people. shape or find you
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