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The Schmitz Mitt


January 28, 2011
By Laura King


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Jan. 28, 2011

Fire Fighting in Canada used to run a column by Quebec-based writer and firefighter Lorne Ulley called Innovative Ideas. Lorne would profile firefighters and their inventions – simple things like accountability tags or patch boards, or complicated contraptions that took months to rig up. Regardless, there were dozens of great ideas featured over the years, designed and built by firefighters who knew what they needed on scene. Firefighters like Randy Schmitz.

Schmitz, as most of you well know, is among Canada’s top extrication experts and writes the Extrication Tips column for Canadian Firefighter and EMS Quarterly. While perusing Facebook on the weekend, I came across Randy’s post about the Schmitz Mitt, an appropriately named glove designed to protect the hands of firefighters during extrication operations.

Global TV did a story about Randy and the Schmitz Mitt, which you can see here, in which Randy takes an axe to his gloved hand to prove its durability. Apparently demand for the Schmitz Mitt has been overwhelming and orders are pouring in. Congrats, Randy!

Speaking of Facebook , we at FFIC, CFF and Firehall.com have been on Facebook for a while but this week, with the help of assistant editor Stefanie Wallace, we made the leap to Twitter. You can http://twitter.com/FireinCanada – tweet us and let us know what you’re up to!

Our goal in this new commitment to social networking is to share information with like-minded viewers, and have them (you!) share it with us.

While social networking can be fun and entertaining, it’s also a great way for us to find out what’s going on in your communities and find more stories for our magazines and websites.

Friend us on Facebook (let us know you like the Fire Fighting in Canada and Firehall.com fan pages), follow us on Twitter (@FireinCanada) and let us know what’s happening in your fire halls.

We’re often asked how to get stories into the magazines. It’s easy: just tell us what’s going on!

Some great news from Midland, Ont., this week, where captains Peter Gregg and Jim Ironside, and firefighters Chris Petit and Doug Ward received pins and certificates of appreciation for the actions on Dec. 13.

At about 7:25 that morning, career firefighter Rob Wilson collapsed after just finishing his night shift. Gregg, Ironside, Petit and Ward reacted quickly, grabbed the defibrillator and called 911.

By the time paramedics arrived, Wilson had regained consciousness and was talking. Wilson was taken to a nearby hospital then transferred to Newmarket, Ont., for a cardiac procedure. Wilson is a 23-year veteran of the Midland Fire Department.

Wilson and Chief Kevin Foster presented the pins and certificates to the four firefighters Monday night in Midland.


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