Firefighters’ new gear expected to help ward off toxic chemicals

SE Mass

WESTPORT, Mass. (WPRI) — Firefighters have a higher risk of being diagnosed with certain types of cancer, according to recent research. Now, Westport fire crews will have an extra barrier of protection that could help ward off disease.

Westport Fire will be able to buy 30 new pairs of protective turnout gloves, thanks to a $2,670 state grant from the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security and Department of Fire Services (DFS).

“Properly equipping our firefighters with the gear they need to be safe allows them to do their jobs as effectively as possible and is a great benefit to the overall safety of our community,” said Chief Brien Legendre in a news release Thursday.

Besides protecting from the immediate risk of open flames, the gloves will protect firefighters from the delayed risk of occupational cancers caused by exposure to toxic chemicals produced during fires, Chief Legendre added.

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