Battalion 3 A Float
Across the nation, heart disease and cardiac related emergencies are the leading cause of death for firefighters. In 2015 56% of all firefighter fatalities were sudden cardiac arrest (1). In 12 years as a career firefighter I have started to see a very positive trend develop; a new generation of firefighters getting hired and focused on staying fit and healthy. As a float Lieutenant I get to travel around to different stations within Montgomery County and I see more and more shifts working out together in the morning and cooking low fat, high protein meals for dinner.
On March 5th, I was assigned to Fire Station 8 in Gaithersburg and was excited to see how many of the shift were in the weight room and encouraging each other to work out. In addition to the five firefighters doing a cardio inspired workout DVD, all three treadmills were full and two other's were focused on strength training. In total we had ten shift members engaged in physical fitness training.
We rely on each other to stay successful and safe at work, so it only makes sense that we continue to be supportive and encouraging on and off the fire ground. A shift that trains together stays strong together. Hopefully this trend will result in a lower percent of firefighters being diagnosed and dying as a result of heart disease and cardiac emergencies.