Frigid Cold Proving Difficult for Local Firefighters

Posted at: 01/26/2014 11:17 PM
By: Sean Boswell

Local firefighters carefully work together in this extremely cold weather.
Local firefighters carefully work together in this extremely cold weather.

(ABC 6 News) -- Captain Ross Baker with the Rochester Fire Department says it's not easy to be a fire fighter in the winter.

"The second you go outside, you freeze up instantly," said Baker.

Baker says scenes like Saturday night at Kemps factory in Rochester can be miserable for crews.

"You go from hot and sweaty to cold and freezing and then maybe back and forth, and it's hard on the equipment, it's hard on the guys," said Baker.

Baker says the department has to be careful with equipment in cold temperatures. He says pumps and hoses can freeze up if outside too long. He also says there are a lot of calls that aren't fire related in the cold, whether they’re for bursting water pipes, carbon monoxide, even people falling.

“Every person who falls outside not only has probably a trauma issue but now a hypothermia issue too so as soon as we get there they've been on a cold concrete snow and if we get there two, three, four, five minutes later, they've been in the elements that long and now we have more issues to deal with," said Baker.

Baker says that everyone at the station rotates and looks out for the man next to them.

"Take care of our own, get a fresh crew on scene and get the rest of the other crews back to the station and rehab and warm up and get some fresh, dry gear on," said Baker.

All just so they can go out and do it all again.