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Decontamination and Cleaning Products for Firefighters

The number of firefighters diagnosed with cancer is rising at an alarming rate, so its of utmost importance that you should keep yourself, your team and your department safe from any personal health issues that might arise as direct result of the job. The most effective means of keeping yourself and your team’s health in check is through decontamination procedures that protects firefighters by removing any carcinogens from equipment, gear, fire trucks, and even the fire station.

The decontamination procedure is performed through the use of various special decontamination products and equipments.

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The decontamination equipment gets most of the job done in getting rid of any harmful particles. Firefighters are at greater risk that’s why they are top priority as they are the ones who receive the most exposure inside the fire scene.

As standard operating procedure, firefighters should always decontaminate their gear and themselves before they leave a fire scene to prevent any health issues as well as possible contamination of the environment. The decon procedures or decontamination procedures that firefighters perform include the removal of harmful particles and residue from their turnout gear, FR clothing, and the PPE, as well as from their dermal areas. Fire fighters are offered decontamination kits and decon kit refills to help them in decontaminating themselves and their gear on site. The decontamination kits usually contain decon gear and equipment and personal decontamination products such as turnout gear, FR clothing, and PPE cleaning products and sprays as well as decontamination wipes, decon field wipes and etc.

The average baby wipes one can buy from grocery stores and supermarket can do the job at basic cleaning and getting rid of dirt, soot, and surface grime but are ineffective at the removal of metals, regardless of how hard you wipe and scrub metals will stick on to the skin in a manner unlike germs and dirt so it’s very difficult to get rid of by any other means. Intense burning of materials in the fire scene have the tendency of releasing heavy metal oxides that are virtually invisible to the naked eye such as the heating of stainless steel, ceramics, anti-corrosion coatings and chrome will release hexavalent chromium; and burning paint, carpets, and other household items and decorations will release lead oxide. Companies such as Hygenall make soaps, surface cleaners, and wipes that not only cleans soot, but also gets rid more than more than 99% of the said heavy metal oxides and other metals such as mercury, arsenic, nickel, copper, and etc.

You can see this website if you want to find out more about these decontamination products.