Beat the heat: How firefighters keep cool

(STORY IMAGE:KHQ.COM)

SPOKANE, Wash. -If you thought it was hot wearing jeans to work-- imagine wearing seventy pounds of fire gear.

Johnathan Prichard is a firefighter and EMT for District Four, and he knows the dangers this week's temperatures bring for a career like his.

"You want to take extra precautions and stray extra hydrated," Prichard said.

He said when it's this hot on the job, a natural instinct is to grab an ice water, but room temperature beverages are actually the way to go.

"With these heat temperatures that we see, cold water isn't the best thing to do. It can throw your body into a natural shock state," Prichard said.

Pricard's Captain, Meghan Hill, said the firefighters also take off any extra clothing to avoid over-heating.

"We would be covered head to toe in material, heavy material, so that creates a very hot environment inside," Captain Hill said.

Captain Hill said when you're fighting fires and sweating all your body's water out, it's important to drink electrolytes beforehand as well.

"You just think, when can I get my next Gatorade," Captain Hill said.

But no matter how hot, District Four says they put their communities safety first.

"You just keep working and moving," Captain Hill said.

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