Oklahoma wildland firefighters take part in study - KSWO 7News | Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Oklahoma wildland firefighters take part in study

(Source OFS) Researchers outfit Foresters Craig Marquardt (left) and Jeri` Irby (right) with sensors and monitors to collect data. (Source OFS) Researchers outfit Foresters Craig Marquardt (left) and Jeri` Irby (right) with sensors and monitors to collect data.
(Source OFS) Forester Craig Marquardt is outfitted with sensors and monitors and ready to perform a prescribed burn at Yourman Wildlife Management Area in Latimer County. (Source OFS) Forester Craig Marquardt is outfitted with sensors and monitors and ready to perform a prescribed burn at Yourman Wildlife Management Area in Latimer County.
(Source OFS) Forest Ranger Roger Kimble is checked for oxygen and carbon monoxide blood levels using pulse oximetry after several hours of working in fire and smoke. (Source OFS) Forest Ranger Roger Kimble is checked for oxygen and carbon monoxide blood levels using pulse oximetry after several hours of working in fire and smoke.
(Source OFS) A team of hot shot firefighters from the US Forest Service’s National Training and Development Center in Missoula, Montana gathered research information on Oklahoma Forestry Services wildland firefighters.  At the top, from left to right incl (Source OFS) A team of hot shot firefighters from the US Forest Service’s National Training and Development Center in Missoula, Montana gathered research information on Oklahoma Forestry Services wildland firefighters. At the top, from left to right incl

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK (KSWO) –Oklahoma Forestry Services firefighters recently took part in a smoke exposure study to help wildland firefighters breathe easier in the future.

The study, based out of the U.S. Forest Service’s Technology and Development Center in Missoula, Montana, collected data from 11 firefighters while they conducted prescribed burns.

“Smoke inhalation is obviously a big issue for wildland firefighters and the more we learn about its effect, the safer we can make the job,” said Oklahoma State Forester George Geissler.  “We’re pleased to have had the team from Missoula here and for our firefighters to have volunteered for such important research.”

The five-year study looks at the air being inhaled by firefighters in relation to their work activity. Volunteers wear sensors and an air filter that measures temperature, carbon monoxide and particulate matter. Pulse oximetry is also used to measure oxygen and carbon monoxide levels in the blood. All of the information is being collected from wildland firefighters across the country in an effort to better understand how smoke inhalation impacts their lives and to find a practical way to minimize the effect.

Researchers have learned one surprising thing already, smoke inhalation is worse during the clean-up stage of firefighting.

Oklahoma is the first southern state to participate in the study.

Copyright 2016 KSWO. All rights reserved.

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