Firefighters in Auburn, Mass. Taking Measures Against Cancer Risk - NECN


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Firefighters in Auburn, Mass. Taking Measures Against Cancer Risk



    Cancer Prevention Program for Firefighters in Auburn, Mass.

    Firefighters in Auburn are taking measures to be less susceptible to cancer while on the job.

    (Published Thursday, May 3, 2018)

    When firefighters head out on a call, they know they're going to potentially be exposed to harmful chemicals.

    "Over the years, there's been lots of studies out there about firefighters and cancer and how we're at an increased risk for cancer, so as a department we've taken the initiative to protect our employees," said Auburn Fire Department Deputy Chief Glenn Johnson.

    The Auburn Fire Department has begun using these Action Wipes as part of their department-wide cancer prevention program.

    "What this does is it breaks down the oil in the particulate matter, in the soot, and it allows you to wipe it off," Deputy Chief Johnson said.

    These wipes are portable, they just keep them right in the front of the fire trucks so they can grab them quickly and use them right on scene.

    "We wipe around our eyelids, we wipe around our mouth, our lips, behind our ears, in our ears, around our nose," Johnson said.

    He says recruits are now even being trained to use these as part of the academy, so it becomes second nature.

    "It's important to get it right away because as your skin temperature rises by 5 degrees, your absorption rate increases by 400 percent."

    Which is why every minute counts and why these firefighters are using every tool at their disposal to keep themselves from becoming a statistic.

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