Partnership in Butler Co., allows Andover firefighters a chance to beat the heat


ANDOVER, Kan. (KSNW) – The heat is taking a toll on everyone including firefighters who overheat on scene.

Many large fire departments have the luxury of a rehab vehicle that can cool firefighters off but some smaller departments have to get creative to get those same benefits.

“It is 100 degrees out here with 110 heat index,” says Mike Roosevelt, Deputy Chief of the Andover Fire Department.

Before they are even out on a call, the men and women in Andover are filling up on water. But when they do respond, and the heat gets to be too much, butler county steps in.

“Any time we have a major structure fire or a major wildland fire, Butler County EMS responds a unit specifically for rehab,” Roosevelt explains.

Thanks to a partnership that unit, similar to an ambulance, gives the fire department a chance to cool off on scene. Its also there in case a firefighter overheats.

“With its air conditioning and space, they will be able facilitate taking care of our firefighters and making sure they are getting hydrated appropriately,” Roosevelt says.

Roosevelt says it goes beyond just taking care of a firefighter, but also ensures the emergency they respond to is taken care of.

“It is a great resource to have because if I did not have this partnership with the Butler County EMS, I would have to pull firefighters off of whatever task they are doing in that emergency to help fill that void,” Roosevelt explains.

On very hot days the EMS van will be automatically on call with staff waiting in the fire department ready to respond.

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