These students are strapping in one of Pittsburg’s firefighters Monday afternoon to get him ready for one of his physical assessments.
“So the firefighter today is wearing his full bunker gear including boots, pants, and jacket. And so now we’re going to see how a stressful situation of a job simulated task. Think of the incline of the treadmill as going upstairs. So this incline of the treadmill will increase and seeing how his body reacts to the stress.” says professor Dr. Allison Barry
This and other tests are to get a baseline for what the firefighters are capable of.The data they collect will be used to help assess what the department should change to prevent one of the biggest killers of firefighters.
“So the number one cause of death in firefighters is sudden cardiac death.” says professor Dr. Allison Barry
While their job does require a lot of physical work, it can take a toll on the firefighters.
“That’s what we’re taking with these measures is seeing where they are at and what we can do to help and what they want help with.”says professor Dr. Allison Barry
And while they are hoping to help the Pittsburg Fire Department improve, it also gives a chance to give real world experience to these students.
“Our students are collecting all the data and it’s giving them first hand assessment for a population that’s a bit different than just testing on your peers. So it’s giving them a whole added feature that most undergrads don’t get.” says professor Dr. Allison Barry
“I’ve administered that test hundreds of times so I’m equipped for the next step.” says senior Samantha Kopp