Pandemic is changing the game for first responders

WMBD This Morning

PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) – More than 40 fire trucks pulled into the Peoria Civic Center Sunday.

Different fire departments across the state lined up for the Illinois Fire Chiefs 70th annual Conference.

Fire Service In, manufactures fire trucks across Illinois and the county. The Vice President, Jim Castellano said the COVID-19 pandemic has shifted its focus to biological issues. He said to help clean the air that firefighters breathe, they’re putting in filters and UV lights in trucks to get rid of certain microorganisms.

“It’s an evolution and process you even see in departments that have multiple trucks through multiple generations… the trucks change as the needs change. Now, the need lately has really been pushing the health and safety of the firefighter,” said Castellano.

He said every first truck is customized to each department’s needs and conferences allow the fire community to learn, evolve and adapt to new health concerns for each firefighter they serve.

“The trucks are crash tested, there are more airbags in trucks, there are better seat belt systems in trucks, there is more room, more air conditioning systems,” said Castellano.

The Illinois Fire Chiefs 70th annual Conference will be held for 2 days at the Peoria Civic Center.

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