Sean Mitchell, Secretary/Treasurer Nantucket Firefighters Local 2509 Interview
In this episode, AFSO21 Radio, The Weekend Wrap-up, host Kevin Ferrara speaks one-on-one with Sean Mitchel, Secretary/Treasurer of Nantucket Firefighters Local 2509.
Sean begins the interview discussing how he became a firefighter and what led him to where he is today in the fire service highlighting who his mentors were and continue to be.
Throughout the interview, Sean explains how he personally became involved in researching PFAS and why the topic is so important to him and his family. Sean states he personally feels manufacturers, unions, and even the NFPA have an obligation to ensure firefighters are protected from being needlessly exposed to Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS).
Both Sean and Kevin speak about how the NFPA must review current PPE standards and make critical changes in how firefighting turnout gear is certified. Sean highlights the need for more public comment during the NFPA standards review process. Both Sean and Kevin agree that turnout gear manufactured from this point on must be PFAS free.
Sean explains how some individuals battling PFAS, like Diane and Paul Cotter, two individuals host Kevin Ferrara has spoken with and continues to work with on a regular basis, have been repeatedly lambasted by manufacturers and some unions, essentially targeting Diane's stellar work regarding PFAS in turnout gear, claiming her findings are false. Fortunately, Diane and her colleagues have been able to provide factual evidence showing PFAS in firefighter turnout gear and how PFAS continues to contaminate ground and drinking water across the globe.
Both Sean and Kevin speak about how firefighter unions have a golden opportunity to become leaders regarding how they will take on the PFAS issue and represent firefighters, choosing to conduct themselves either in a passive or active manner.
NFPA 1971, Standard on Protective Ensembles for Structural Fire Fighting and Proximity Fire Fighting
International Association of Fire Fighters (Contact Page)
Professional Fire Fighters of Massachusetts (Contact Page)
Your Turnout Gear and PFOA (Diane and Paul Cotter)
AFSO21 Home Page
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