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Smart Fire Department Shopping

Posted by John Feld on 4/12/2014 to Fire Equipment

Fire chiefs have one of the toughest jobs anywhere.  They have to deal with life-threatening environments like fires, highway wreck scenes, and natural disaster areas.  Beside physical dangers, they also have to smartly budget public monies in tough economic times and get ready to answer to their taxpayers.  Now that’s scary! 


So when it comes to looking for new gear from turnouts to thermal imagers, planning ahead and smart shopping are essential skills.  Take for example, protective gear.  Helmets and turnouts must always be in stock in case someone’s gear is damaged.  New pulleys for rope rescue or hose roll bags may not be as high on the priority list.  With either type of item, looking at multiple vendors or waiting for sales may be a wise move.


Essential Firefighting Gear to Stock


Every firefighter is trained to deal with the heat and smoke of a dangerous structure fire, but not one of them can do it without protective gear. The fire chief will work with a logistics officer to ensure this gear is always in stock in case of damaged gear.  That includes the following items:


·         Turnout coats and bunker pants

·         Structurally rated fire boots with good protection and traction

·         Helmets that are protective and comfortable

·         Gloves rated for structure fires


Wish List Items or Incentives


Every firefighter would probably like to be as comfortable as possible and outfitted in the sharpest gear available.  That isn’t always possible, so they may have to wait, and some items may be purchased in limited quantities and doled out over time with respect to someone’s seniority or on special occasions. That might include some of these items:  


·         Uniform station boots for daily wear and quick donning and doffing

·         Extrication gloves designed to handle glass and ripped metal

·         Pulleys for high angle rescue specialists

·         Fun incentive gifts like a grill spatula.


Purchasing Online

These days, purchasing gear online is pretty easy.  It’s simple to research options on a retail website.  Delivery is taken care of, so nobody has to leave the comfort of the office.  With a little care, a chief can make sure his troops are well outfitted for any situation without stretching the budget, and with some low-cost incentive gift purchases, he can create good will in the department, too.

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