Firefighters trying to keep their cool

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by MEG COYLE/KING 5 News

NWCN.com

Posted on July 7, 2010 at 5:34 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jul 7 at 7:26 PM

From temperatures in the 50s to now the 80s can be a real shock to the system. It's a welcome shock for a lot of us, but for firefighters it can be dangerous.

Fighting fires in 90-degree heat and in heavy gear can spell trouble for firefighters. Now they have a new tool designed to help them keep their cool.

Sunshine and temperature in the 70s is a perfect combination - unless you combine that with 40 pounds of firefighting gear.

"Bunker gear is sort of like an oven mit, where just like if you go to pull a cookie sheet out of the oven, if you leave your hand in there long enough, it will begin to sweat," says Captain Kyle Ohashi with the Kent Fire Department.

Fighting a housefire last night, Kent firefighters couldn't do it alone. The helpers in this case also needed help.

"Now we have King County paramedics who come out to the scene with us to make sure firefighters get rehydrated and hook them up to a heart monitor if necessary," he added.

It has been a rough summer for businesses that rely on hot weather to bring in cold hard cash. Ice cream truck drivers say May and June were rough and they're hoping July's hot streak keeps kids coming back for more.

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