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FoxFire brightens up FDIC with tool materials

Prices range from $30 for the helmet bands to $100 for enough epoxy to coat two ax handle


Photo Rick Markley
Zachary Green shows FoxFire’s helmet bands during FDIC.

Firefighter Zachary Green was laying on his couch three years ago watching a special on 9/11.

Part of the special showed how the reflective material on the stairs, mandated in all New York high rises, contributed to getting more people out of the Twin Towers before they collapsed.

That fact sparked an idea that set him off on a mission to design and distribute illuminating materials for firefighters. In 2010, Green quit his job and began selling the helmet bands and tool-handle wraps out of the trunk of his car.

Now, he’s negotiating with FDNY for large order of FoxFire illuminating helmet and tool wraps, which were among the exhibits at FDIC.

Available as a helmet band, tool wrap or epoxy, it gives off enough light to actually aid search and rescues in dark rooms. Prices range from $30 for the helmet bands to $100 for enough epoxy to coat two ax handles.

It is too early to tell what kind of lifespan the products will have. Pete Hauser, one of Green’s partners and a fellow firefighter, said his tool wrap is two years old and works as it did when it was new.

Hauser’s experience with the product runs deeper than most. As one of Green’s friends, Hauser and his department were among the first to use it.

When a fast food restaurant unexpectedly flashed over, Hauser was only able to make his way to the exit because of his crews helmet bands.

Green is building a network of firefighter distributors because he wants people to buy it after they’ve seen it in action. That’s how he drew the attention of FDNY; a sample was sent to one company, which may lead to an order for the entire department.