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Have we gone too far ?

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  • Have we gone too far ?

    Hi, I wouyld like to see if there are others out here that think we have gone too far pulling the safety card? Our wellness committee has decided that we are not going to do the pack test this year because we might kill somebody. However, we were able to do the pack test if we wanted to for pt. So i did, now it just came from the committee that we are not allowed to do the pack test for pt or any other reason while on duty. This is to keep us safer and healther. This is information and not open for discussion. per the committee. Really? It was passed down from the chief that it is mandatory to pt. but now we pt too much?. From what i have learned that there has been 11 firefighters die while doing the pack test. All of which did nothing to prepare for it or already had an existing condition before doing the pack test. Shouldn't we encourage our folks to get inshape and do something to challange our bodies to be prepared for the strenous work we preform?
    I hate the pack test too but i work hard to prepare to get ready for it. Are we going backwards?

    Thanks
    Frustrated Barry

  • #2
    Isn't the purpose of the pack test to help determine your fitness level so as to hopefully avoid LODD by weeding out those physically unfit? Sure, 11 may have died during the pack test, but hundreds of died of heart attacks, many of which can probably be attributed to being out of shape. Which is worse?

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    • #3
      be pro-active

      I have been an advocate for annual physicals including cardiac, full blood work and full body scans. Doen't make sense to push fitness if you don't know what a FF's health issues are. As fit as a FF can be means nothing if you have a cardiac issue or a cancer that has not presented itself yet.

      But departments won't pay a little now but will pay alot for disability later.

      I would guess that the fatalities are due to either lack of fitness and/or pre-existing cardiac/health issues.

      I feel that being proactive would catch issues early to be treated, address issues early.

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      • #4
        stupid questio but what is the pack test?

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        • #5
          Originally posted by ctfireguy View Post
          stupid questio but what is the pack test?
          I was wondering too - here is an answer from our friend Wiki -

          The pack test, also known more officially as the Work Capacity Test (WCT), is a U.S. Forest Service physical test for wildland firefighters. The pack test is intentionally stressful as it tests the capacity of muscular strength and aerobic endurance of the firefighter. There are three tests known as arduous, moderate, and light. The pack test may be given as part of the S-130/S-190 basic wildland firefighter course.

          The pack test replaced an earlier physical fitness test called the step test, which measured physical fitness based on beginning and ending heart rate after a short workout on a set of stairs. It was believed that the pack test more accurately measures the ability to perform arduous labor for a sustained period of time (e.g. 45 minutes) than the step test. Besides the U.S. Forest Service, all other federal and most other state and private agencies also use the pack test although there are a few state and private agencies which still use the step test.
          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Work_Capacity_Test

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          • #6
            Thanks folks. You have made my day. I thought maybe i was missing something? I just don't get it. All i am going to do is protect my guys and hope that nobody gets hurt. Its either that or start wrapping FF up in bubble wrap so they can't get hurt.

            Thanks again. PS if you have any ideas to go to the chiefs that are currently listening to the committee i would greatly apprecitate it..

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            • #7
              Hi, I wouyld like to see if there are others out here that think we have gone too far pulling the safety card? Our wellness committee has decided that we are not going to do the pack test this year because we might kill somebody
              Not doing the pack test will defintely kill somebody....
              ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
              Lt. Ray McCormack, FDNY

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              • #8
                Originally posted by DeputyChiefGonzo View Post
                Not doing the pack test will defintely kill somebody....
                I agree chief. Our chief doesn't seem to want to listen to reason.

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