SC city FD first in state to provide firefighters cancer-protecting gear
The new gear is designed with “particulate protection technology,” which blocks smoke from going up a firefighter’s body through the arms and legs
By FireRescue1 Staff
MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. — The Myrtle Beach Fire Department is the first in the state to purchase a new protective gear with advanced technology to help reduce the risk of cancer in firefighters.
According to Live 5 WSCS, the new gear is designed with “particulate protection technology,” which blocks smoke from entering the firefighter’s body through the arms and legs. Twenty-one firefighters received the gear, with each set costing $2,500.
“What we’ve designed is a system that blocks the particulates to the best of their abilities from saturating into the skin," said Chris Catalano, territory manager for North American Fire Equipment Company.
We’re proud to announce that the Myrtle Beach Fire Department has just received it’s first shipment of brand new fire gear that will outfit 21 firefighters with more to come as part of our Cancer Safety Initiative!#earnit #mbfd #cancersucks #lionfiregear #leadingthecharge pic.twitter.com/oQl1MU66IT— Myrtle Beach FD (@MyrtleBeachFire) July 16, 2019
The department is planning on outfitting an additional 30 firefighters with the new gear. Officials hope the gear will reduce the risk of cancer.
“Statistically speaking, firefighters are at a much higher risk of contracting cancer than the general public,” said Myrtle Beach Fire Chief Tom Gwyer. “We just had a firefighter diagnosed not even a month ago. So, it’s a real epidemic in the fire service and it’s something that we want to minimize the risk to our employees and this is the first step to hopefully try and curb that trend."