Lacy Lakeview FD equips firefighters with thermal imaging cameras

Posted at 8:59 PM, Apr 05, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-05 23:26:14-04

The Lake Lakeview Fire Department is equipped with six thermal imaging cameras.

Lieutenant John Haigh with the Lacy Lakeview Fire Department said five were purchased by the Lacy Lakeview Fire Association and an additional one was donated by the family of a firefighter who recently died.

"Our primary job is rescue first, fire second," Haigh said.

The imager is installed into the firefighter's mask, allowing he/she to see what kind of temperatures they are walking into as well as if there is anyone to rescue.

"This will help us detect if there is a person in that room. It'll give us a glow and let us know where that person is," Haigh said.

Tomas Cardoza has been with the fire department for five years. He said these imagers will be useful for many of the calls the fire department responds to.

"[The imager] gives us where we're able to see and visually through the smoke and see the temperatures and different things reacting," Cardoza said.

The new cameras help firefighters to see more clearly through the smoke so they know what they are walking into.

"When there's people inside and we need to know where they are at or we're in a situation where we need to know okay we need to get out of there," Cardoza said. "You know, honestly, this is probably the best thing we can get for our fire department right now."

Haigh said these new cameras are putting the department on another level.

"We had to rely on a hand held thermal imager that was most of the time on the outside of the building and it was ineffective," Haigh said. "Most of the time it will not go through steel walls, it will not go through glass. So we were ineffective using the outside thermal imagers. Now with these, we are on the state of the art of getting firefighting done."

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