Hello...Yes, it is me...Old loud mouth again....LOL....As I am sure we have all been a bit on the warm side lately....I would like to know how you prepare for the heat and operating on calls...We have recently gone to planning ahead...Every Firefighter keeps 1 liter bottle of water in one of their boots...upon responding to a call we are to preload (drink 1 liter of water) enroute to the call...also water is strongly encouraged frequently to replace fluids....along with gatorade or another electrolyte beverage...cool is best (helps prevent throwing up)...try to limit the sports drinks to 1 liter or less as it too will make you vomit. Rehab often...primary concern is pulse rate less than 100, check O-2 saturation... should be greater than 92%...if you have the means check the CO levels...should be less than 5%... greater than that provide O-2 to blow it off....and above all (doesn't need to be said) KEEP TRACK OF YOUR PEOPLE....if they stop sweating or become disoriented they are in trouble.....Remove them from the heat source, cool them down, remove ALL their gear and get medical help...Don't use those misting devices...they will actually increase the body core temp....Hope this makes us all think about the hidden dangers that are out there...Be safe, Be smart, and lets all go home in the same shape we left in.....Always Keep the Faith...............Paul
Those urine colour charts are a classic. I was on a strike team a couple of years ago, came in to the staging area after a day out in the bush working and headed to one of the portables. OK, do the right thing and check the colour hmm, mid-yellow. So what, I'm finished for the day. Go into the rest area and have a couple of cans of Coke (I know, bad boy) then off to the nearest pub for a meal and a mug of coffee. Back to the rest area and on the way get rid of the excess fluid - hmm, crystal clear...
I have come to believe sugar and caffeine intake don't have any effect on urine color. So we have to look at other factors like Paul has mentioned.
I buy cases of electrolyte tablets for the guys I work with. Not to be confused with salt tabs. Probably better for you than sports drinks. We try to limit sports drinks to 1 for every 3 liters of water at the most. Sometimes we'll even make an effort to limit ourselves to one sports drink per incident (wrecks, etc).
It got to 104 here in DC and was somehow hotter than southern Texas and Florida. I know CNN even rode along with one engine company to do a story on the heat. It was terrible and of course with the heat, we had several fires in the city. One was even a two alarm fire that took out 3 row houses.(greater alarm fires are very rare in DC so if it happens, its big)
Navy Studies have shown that vitals post agressive work, like firefighting will head back to normal limits while resting in rehab but our core temp continues to rise for another 20-30 minutes even though our vitals are heading to the safe zone...
The easiest way to reduce core temps in the field is forearm submersion in those portable chairs. The blood is cooled easier near the distal extremity and thus returns back to our core cooler. Pretty simple concept. I do not like the mist fans, because everyone is wet and then has to re-don their gear which leads to potential steam burns. Fluid re-hydration, cool place (out of the sun) vitals, and sit in the chairs, with some arm soak time and a bundle of towels to dry off afterwards is what we use.
If anyone needs O2 to get their vitals back, bought a ride to the hospital for eval.
"Fluid re-hydration, cool place (out of the sun) vitals, and sit in the chairs, with some arm soak time and a bundle of towels to dry off afterwards is what we use."
At a wildfire:
Re-hydration - easy.
Cool place (out of the sun) - shade can sometimes be found...
Vitals - sometimes
In the chairs with arm soak time - sounds great!
Bundle of towels - not going to happen.
A structure fire has very similar problems, but is much easier to cater for.
We keep a cooler full of iced down water ready to whenever we get a call. Last truck out always brings it.
One trick I learned back in my high school days was to sip a little bit of pickle juice. I was told it would help you keep from losing as much fluids and helps to keep from cramping up. I do not know if there is any truth to it but we would all sip a little before football games and it seemed to work well.