Firefighting gear: Packs and lights


CarolinaFireJournal - David Pease
David Pease The Reds Team
04/23/2012 -

As we roll into spring, I am not sure what happened to winter. I have to say for most of us, the winter was quite mild. For those who love the cold and snow, I guess not so good for you. Looking at the bright side, with gas prices continuing to soar, your heat cost for the winter months had to be lower. Maybe next year we’ll see old man winter again.

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We are going to look at an LED light system and a rope/equipment bag this issue.

I have written about several of the packs that Coaxsher puts out for search and rescue. I used the SR-1 Endeavor pack on several of my trips to Costa Rica working in the jungles, and it worked quite well. I also have the RCP-1 Pro Radio Chest Harness that I also use in searches and training, another nice addition to your rescue gear.

They make excellent gear that holds up well and is versatile in the field. The “Bowline Haul Pack” is a new piece of gear they have for hauling your rope and hardware. I used an LA Gear pack for my personal rope gear for years, but have now switched to the Bowline pack.

The pack will carry rope as well as hardware. Since we carry our rope in separate bags, I have my seat harness with chest component in the main section. There are two inside, long zipper compartments that will hold additional gear — mine holds my figure eights, brake rack and ascender. There are two smaller outside Velcro pockets, that I use for my carabiners. There is also a zipper top compartment that will hold additional equipment. I put my prusiks and webbing in there. The pack comes with a five by four foot tarp for protecting your rope or other equipment. I used it to wrap my harness.

The pack has 2500 cubic inches of space with six compression straps. This allowed me to tighten the pack for a more streamlined package. The back section will unhook and give you great access to your gear. The Bowline pack has two handles as well as the backpack straps. The handles allow you to carry the pack like a duffel bag, from the side, or there is a handle at the top you can use.

There are also four foamed oval cushions on the back plate that makes it comfortable to carry on your back.

The “Bowline Haul Pack” is comfortable to back carry, it’s durable, it has a great design for holding your equipment, and it gives you easy access to everything.

For more information visit www.Coaxsher.com.

Recently I came across a vendor who was selling LED lights for your trucks and personal vehicles. Having been around since the “Fireball” or Kojak lights, I have seen emergency lighting go from standard lights, to halogens, to strobes, to now the LEDs. The process of technology has always intrigued and amazed me. The newer lights are brighter and pull way less power to achieve that effect.

The LED lights I noticed were small but bright. They were in a cluster of eight small lights, four being red and four being white. They are called the “Grill 8” and can be used inside or outside the vehicle. My dilemma was that my Team Ford Expedition has no metal in the front grill to mount any lights. My option for putting in grill lights, was to add some metal bracing to the grill of the Expedition. Not an option I was looking forward to.

These LED grill lights clip on rather than being bolted or screwed. My option now became apparent as to what would solve my problem. I have the Grill 8 lights clipped in the plastic grill of my Expedition and they are working great. There are several flash configurations that can be used, and the control switch mounted in my dash nicely.

For more information visit www.rtsemergencylighting.com.

Next issue I will review products and equipment. Until then, train hard, be safe, and know your equipment.

If you have questions or comments e-mail David Pease at [email protected] and visit the team website at www.RedsTeam.com.
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