Firefighters answer the call for help daily.
Now there’s an app to help them when they’re in distress. Redline Rescue is a peer-to-peer support portal that connects firefighters who need mental health help with others. They can log on, answer a few screening questions via drop-down lists, and within minutes, locate peers to talk.
“It was surprising how many of our family members here were suffering from what they see, from what they experienced," said Lt. Dustin Hawkins, who works for Indian River Fire Rescue.
Hawkins suffered in silence for more than a year after an explosive accident aboard a marine unit when he was in his mid-30s left him burned and scarred.
After his accident, the lieutenant, who also serves as a chaplain for both the department and union, "got back on the truck as quickly as possible." He was still healing, with skin grafts sticking to his uniform.