Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service (MAWWFRS) have
commenced the rollout of a new Multi-Function Personal Protection Equipment
(PPE) for its firefighters.
On February 14th, 2018, all firefighters stationed within
the Swansea Command Area commenced operational response, wearing their new
Multi-Function PPE uniforms. These will be worn by crews to all incidents, with
the exception of property fires.
Station Manager Sean Lloyd said, “We are delivering the roll
out of the new Multi-Function PPE to each Command Area at a time. Swansea has
become the second Command Area to receive the new equipment, following the roll
out in Neath Port Talbot earlier in the year. Within the next 12 months, every
firefighter in this Service will be equipped with the new kit to respond to
incidents that are not property fires.
Visually, the new red kit is strikingly different to the
traditional firefighting PPE, which is gold in colour.
Whilst the crews in Neath Port Talbot and Swansea Commands
will continue to wear the traditional, gold coloured, firefighting PPE when
responding to property fires, the red Multi-function PPE will be worn by crews
to such incidents as road traffic collisions, rope rescues and wildfires, to
name only a few.
The kit allows firefighters to work in arduous conditions,
whilst not being restricted by the thermal barriers associated with the current
(gold) firefighting PPE. This will reduce fatigue and heat stress.”
Chief Fire Officer Chris Davies QFSM said “The role of a
firefighter has evolved significantly over the past 20 years and, by providing
our firefighters with this multi-function PPE, we recognise the ever-increasing
demands on our crews.
Our firefighters put themselves in harm’s way on a daily basis,
therefore Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service is fully committed to
providing them with the very best equipment, to protect them as they protect you.
This investment will also save the Fire and Rescue Service
money as the wearing of the new Multi-Function PPE, for incidents that are not
property fires, will prolong the operational life of our firefighting PPE kit.
This is one small example of how we have improved our business processes to
save money during this age of austerity.
Since 2006, we have reduced our budget by 20%, a saving of
£9million. Yet, despite the financial restraints faced by our communities, we
will continue to strive in our goal to provide a world-class emergency response
to our communities.”