Union firefighters now have new, state-of -the-art tools to help fight fires, and save lives.
The Union Fire Protection District recently purchased three thermal imaging cameras (TIC) that allow firefighters to see areas of heat through smoke, darkness, or heat-permeable barriers to better locate the source of a blaze, according to Union Fire Chief Russ Hamilton.
The cameras also assist firefighters to locate heat signatures from smoldering fires or overheated electrical wiring.“One of the main life-saving benefits of the TIC is to locate persons through smoke conditions or to locate lost and missing persons in the darkness of night,” Hamilton said.
The new cameras replace two, 10-year-old models that were considerably larger and had become obsolete to repair. “The technology that has been developed in the last 10 years has advanced the thermal imaging camera beyond our expectations” added Hamilton.
“When our equipment committee began to research the replacement of our old TICs we quickly found today’s technology was far superior to what we were accustomed to.” The TICs were purchased from Leo M. Ellebracht Company, Wentzville.
The district’s purchase came at a time when the TIC manufacturer — ISG Infrasys — released its latest model which provided a true handheld size along with a high resolution and pin point temperature screen, according to Hamilton.
The Union Fire District is one of the first fire agencies in the country using ISG’s newest model.
The cameras have been assigned to the first out pumper at each of the three Union fire stations.