With wildfires spreading across the United States, there is a real fear that many people could lose their homes and businesses. If you're working to fight these fires or are still at your job when a fire strikes, you could be in danger of an injury. How can you be sure that you'll stay safe?
It's hard to guarantee safety if you're working with fire, but there are some measures your employer can take to help. Here are a few things he or she can do.
1. Keep an eye on the weather patterns
One of the things that causes wildfires to spread is wind. If the day is going to be windy, you may spend time setting up barriers to prevent the fires from spreading. It's important for employers to keep their employees apprised of any changes in the wind patterns, since a sudden shift could result in a hazardous or deadly situation.
2. Prepare plenty of water and cooling stations
In firefighting gear, and alongside growing flames, it gets extremely hot. It's important to have water for rehydration purposes as well as cooling stations where workers can get relief. It's possible to suffer heat stroke in hot circumstances, so anyone who begins to feel unwell should be taken off the job immediately and receive treatment.
3. Keep first aid ready
Burns may still happen despite your best efforts to avoid them. It's hard to predict if a home will collapse or a tree will fall. Anyone working to stop the spread of fires should have a first aid kit and emergency supplies at the ready. Being sent in without the necessary emergency gear could result in an already bad situation turning fatal.
These are just a few things employers can do to keep firefighting teams safe during wildfires. Protecting others is important, but first, you need to protect yourself. Stay alert and be prepared with an escape route, so you can stay safe.