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Firefighters Help Design Turnout Gear To Maximize Performance

lakeland-turnout-gear-fireIn the turnout gear industry, we all adhere to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standards for creating turnout gear, but that doesn’t mean your gear can’t be customized to maximize performance and save you valuable time on the rig or in an emergency situation. Turnout gear designed specifically for high performance is a reality, with features intended to maximize comfort, maneuverability and task efficiently.

We talked with real firefighters, and got their perspectives on some of the designed-for- performance features of Lakeland’s Stealth Firefighter Turnout Gear. Let’s review the top three ways Stealth stands out.

Simple, Time Saving Features.

Imagine if your turnout gear was designed specifically to save you time and energy, allowing you to focus your attention on preparing for the emergency task at hand. What performance features would you want in your turnout gear? Lakeland listened to real firefighters and made precise design decisions to maximize performance. 

  • Lower Back Draw Cord. Currently, Lakeland is the only turnout manufacturer to put a draw cord in the lower back. What are the benefits? Simple. Air is the greatest insulator against heat; as a result, coats are designed to be large to allow trapped air to act as an insulator. However, the oversized coat becomes an issue as firefighters dawn their SCBA’s: they throw the SCBA on their back, secure the chest strap, buckle the waist strap, pull to tighten the straps and then are forced to take valuable time to adjust the bunched material that gathers in the front. The draw cord is designed to cinch the extra material in the back of the coat, so when a firefighter puts on his SCBA, there are no adjustments required at the front of the coat.

    “When I’m on the rig, I’ll put on my SCBA and secure the chest strap but I won’t buckle the waist strap. I always wait until I exit the rig to buckle it, because I need to stand up to get the right fit.” - Firefighter / EMT
  • Angled Pant Pockets. Firefighters often find themselves in unique situations, whether it is crawling on the ground or leaning into vehicles. The pant pockets of Lakeland Stealth are designed with these unique situations in mind. The angled pockets allow for easier pocket access and the design also prevents contents from spilling out of the pockets in bent positions. 
  • Pant Grip Handles. Simple, right? The first step to gearing up is pulling on your pants and boots. Stealth gear is designed with a pant grip handle, making it seconds faster to pull on your gear in an emergency. 

    “I never would have though about grip handles, but I could see how that could make a difference in timing.” - Firefighter / EMT

Pants Designed To Move.

Perhaps the most ergonomic turnout pant on the market today, the Lakeland Stealth turnout pant is cut and designed specifically to improve both performance and comfort. With a motor cross design in mind, the Stealth turnout pant is comprised of a singular lower panel and no side seams. With only a rear seam, firefighters will never have to fight with seam abrasion or uncomfortable rubbing. Not only does the single lower panel reduce abrasion in tight quarters, it also facilitates increased mobility.

“Stealth turnout gear is significantly lighter than my old gear. Not only that, I never have to worry about my pants moving around or sliding down.” –Sean, Lieutenant Firefighter 

LazerMax Trim For Increased Visibility.

Firefighters are prepared to handle tough conditions on the job and are trained for emergency situations. But the fact of the matter is, a growing majority of emergency calls are vehicle and accident related. As a result, visibility on the roadways is a critical new feature of industry-leading firefighter turnout gear. Found exclusively on Lakeland turnout gear, Patent Pending LazerMax Trim is a silver reflective seam on the arm and around the shoulder of the jacket. With increased visibility, concern for safety on the scene of an accident is eliminated and firefighters can focus instead on the securing the emergency situation.

“Anything that can increase visibility without adding more weight to our gear is critical. Bulky reflective gear reduces dexterity and maneuverability.” – Sean, Lieutenant Firefighter

How does your firefighter turnout gear stack up? Learn more about the unique performance driven design features of Lakeland Stealth in our free turnout guide.

Lakeland Stealth™ Turnout Gear is the ultimate in fire protection technology. Advanced ergonomics combined with cutting edge materials give you superior protection with maximum freedom of movement. Learn more about Lakeland Stealth, request a sample and #GearUp with Lakeland.

 Lakeland Firefighter Turnout Gear Guide