Alaska News
CHANGE STATE

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Column: The continuing debate on turnout gear service life


Over the past several years, we have written various columns associated with the care and maintenance of firefighter protective clothing and equipment. One of the perennial issues on this topic has been gear service life. In many cases, this particular topic has been a subject of polarization among the fire service, particularly when it comes to firefighter helmets. In this month’s column, we attempt to shed more light on this topic to allow fire departments and individual firefighters to make better informed choices with respect to their gear service life. All clothing and equipment have a finite service life. For the most part, turnout gear is designed to be quite durable, made with rugged materials that are intended to repeatedly provide protection under a wide range of varying exposure conditions. By definition, service life is the length of time that clothing and equipment can remain in service while still providing a minimum level of protection. Nevertheless, even brand new gear that is subject to a serious fire event can require immediate retirement. Similarly, gear that is abused or improperly cared for can also lead to a shortened service life.
FireRescue1


Monday, September 17, 2018

Burning abandoned vehicle reported near Palmer Golf Course


Alaska State Troopers and Palmer Police responded to a burning car alongside a road near the Palmer Golf Course late Saturday night. Troopers called the scene, “suspicious,” as the responders from the Palmer Fire Department sprayed down the burning vehicle, a Mercedes ML350 LL. There were no license plates, and authorities did not have a VIN number at the time. According to Palmer Police, the Mercedes appeared to have collided with a tree that had been pushed to about a 45 degree angle. The biggest concern was a potential wildfire, police said.
Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman

Kodiak Fire Department report: staffing, station issues remain


Fire Chief Mullican presented the Kodiak Fire Department’s annual report to the city council at a regular work session, Tuesday. Although Mullican praised his staff and illustrated the department’s prowess with statistics collected over the past year, he also noted a number of ongoing issues, including difficulties with attracting new firefighters to the island and the unstable condition of the fire station. “As all of you know, we’ve been dealing with personnel shortages over the past year-plus,” said Mullican, who went on to explain the dept has been understaffed since May, 2017. “We’ve been doing 48-hours-on/48-hours-off, to cover the personnel shortage.”
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