While there’s a stereotype that police officers are pudgy because of all the donuts they eat, the reality is that 50% of firefighters who die on duty are killed by heart attacks and strokes, and two companies in California want to change that, by improving the physical fitness of their firefighters.
To that end, Worldwide Facilities, Inc. and Fireman’s Fund Insurance Co. have banded together to present the Los Angeles Fire Department with a gift of $24,378 to purchase new workout machines.
According to Battalion Chief Fred Mathis, the equipment is, “…equipment is specifically designed to strengthen the heart muscles and entire body.” He went on to explain, “A firefighter’s job is very strenuous and we’re committed to helping them maintain healthy lives and staying physically fit throughout their careers.”
Chief Mathis also said that his department will be using the money for an elliptical trainer, two new treadmills, and a variety of weights, which will be put at Station 11, located near 7th Street and Wilshire Boulevard.
According to insurance industry studies, a regular fitness program can dramatically impact firefighters’ wellness, to the tune of 71% fewer work-related injuries, up to a 45% reduction in sprains and strains, and a 43% reduction of sick leave.
Davis Moore, president of Worldwide Facilities, told the press, “We can’t think of a better way to help the firefighters. They have incredibly demanding jobs and it’s important we support their health with these new high-tech workout machines.”
On August 13th, Chief Mathis, Los Angeles firefighters, and executives from Worldwide Facilities and Fireman’s Fund held a special public recognition event where the grant package was presented The grant is part of Fireman’s Fund’s nationwide philanthropic program designed to provide local fire departments with necessary equipment, training and educational tools. The grant has been issued to more than 1,400 different departments across the country, since it’s inception in 2004.