Fire chief shares tips on braving near 100-degree temperatures

Published: Jun. 15, 2022 at 8:00 PM CDT|Updated: Jun. 15, 2022 at 10:18 PM CDT
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PIKE ROAD, Ala. (WSFA) - Sirens were blaring as Pike Road firefighters rushed out of the station Wednesday. No one at the scene was hurt.

“Somebody had burned a little food in the stove,” Chief Matt Missildine said.

That does not stop the need for urgency, and crews are doing it all in the harsh sun with temperatures in the upper 90s.

“The fires are still happening,” Missildine said. “The fire doesn’t care what the weather is, whether it’s freezing outside or it’s 100 degrees outside.”

That was the case on Tuesday when a Montgomery County home caught fire after being struck by lightning. Firefighters were near the flames in around 40 pounds of equipment.

The fire chief explained first responders must be really careful in the extreme heat.

“We carry water, and then Gatorade-type stuff with us, electrolytes,” he said.

Firefighters are also on work, rest cycles. The fire station explained it is cycling team members out to prevent them from overheating.

It is not just first responders; anyone can overheat in these conditions.

“When you stop sweating, that’s a really bad sign,” Missildine said. “Need to be calling 911 at that point or seeking medical help.”

Regardless of your physical shape, the fire official said that anyone can be impacted by the heat.

He reminds the public to drink plenty of water and to stay out of the sun whenever possible, adding that heat stroke and heat exhaustion are real concerns.

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