UM Does Research On Smoke Jumper Equipment Lighter - ABC FOX MONTANA NEWS, WEATHER, SPORTS - KTMF/KWYB

UM Does Research On Smoke Jumper Equipment Lighter

Posted: Updated:
MISSOULA -

The University of Montana's College of Education and Human Sciences is researching ways to make the Missoula smoke jumper's jobs easier during the wildfire season. They're researching ways to help smoke jumpers carry their heavy equipment more efficiently.

Fighting wildfires in the summer heat is not an easy job, especially when you add more than 100 pounds of heavy equipment to the mix.

"No one's really looked at that type of weight, especially over that type of terrain, and hiking miles on end," UM graduate student Michael Powell said.

He's studying Exercise Science at UM with an focus in bio mechanics. Powell is part of a team of students in the field working in the university's bio mechanic lab to come up with ways to help smoke jumpers carry a lighter load.

"We're really trying to help them move about and do their job better, I mean, they are carrying anywhere from 120 to 125 pounds, hiking three miles and actually jumping in with this load as well," Powell said.

The bio mechanics lab is part of Phyllis J. Washington Education Center. It includes advanced research equipment for the study of human movement.

"If you're having to stop and adjust your packs or take breaks, you're not effective," said Dr. Charlie Palmer, the Associate Professor of the health and human performance department. He was a smoke jumper for 10 years, and has been involved in the project since the idea formed. He said the best work in this field is done in the lab.

"You're able to come up with better product, as opposed to trial and error in the field," Palmer said.

The project is in the preliminary stages. Some of the tests include having smoke jumpers carry their packs on a treadmill, so researchers can collect data on their energy. Smoke jumpers also walked across force plates with packs so researchers see how they can better distribute the weight.

"It's a lot of weight for them to be carrying, and we just want them to utilize what they can," Powell said.

He said they hope to have the study done in time to help smoke jumpers next fire season. The project is one of several studies UM's Department of Health and Human Sciences is conducting to help firefighters.

Research is funded by the U.S. Forest Service, and the USDA's Missoula Technology and Development Center.

  • NationalMore>>

  • Journalist killing highlights role of freelancers

    Journalist killing highlights role of freelancers

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 4:57 AM EDT2014-08-27 08:57:55 GMT
    Journalists James Foley, Steven Sotloff and Peter Theo Curtis all shared one thing in common when they were captured by Islamic militants in Syria, the title "freelance journalist."
    Journalists James Foley, Steven Sotloff and Peter Theo Curtis all shared one thing in common when they were captured by Islamic militants in Syria, the title "freelance journalist."
  • Crist makes Florida comeback bid as 4 states vote

    Crist makes Florida comeback bid as 4 states vote

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 4:39 AM EDT2014-08-27 08:39:37 GMT
    If there were any doubts that former Republican Gov. Charlie Crist would be accepted by Florida Democrats, they were cast aside as he overwhelmingly earned the Democratic nomination to challenge Republican Gov....
    If there were any doubts that former Republican Gov. Charlie Crist would be accepted by Florida Democrats, they were cast aside as he overwhelmingly earned the Democratic nomination to challenge Republican Gov. Rick Scott...
  • Hackerspaces used to turn ideas turn into reality

    Hackerspaces used to turn ideas turn into reality

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 4:18 AM EDT2014-08-27 08:18:02 GMT
    At HeatSync Labs, the tables are littered with computer chips, pens, pads and tools while the room is abuzz with the chatter of would-be inventors hoping to change the world - or just make cool things. They are...
    Inside a nondescript garage-like workshop nestled between restaurants, a flower shop and jewelry stores along Main Street, ideas are taking shape.
  • Most Popular

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Authorities Get Dozens Of Tips & Narrow Search For Lucius Robbi

    Authorities Get Dozens Of Tips & Narrow Search For Lucius Robbi

    Tuesday, August 26 2014 11:55 PM EDT2014-08-27 03:55:50 GMT
    Dozens of tips pour into sheriff's departments in Montana and Idaho, but there's been no luck in finding missing University of Montana student Lucius Robbi.
    Dozens of tips pour into sheriff's departments in Montana and Idaho, but there's been no luck in finding missing University of Montana student Lucius Robbi.
  • Bail, Arraignment Dates Set For Kalispell Six Caught In Sex Sting

    Bail, Arraignment Dates Set For Kalispell Six Caught In Sex Sting

    Monday, August 25 2014 8:27 PM EDT2014-08-26 00:27:21 GMT
    We learn more about six of the men caught in a four-day, online sex sting.
    We learn more about six of the men caught in a four-day, online sex sting.
  • PHOTOS: National Dog Day!

    PHOTOS: National Dog Day!

    Tuesday, August 26 2014 9:00 PM EDT2014-08-27 01:00:18 GMT
    August 26 is National Dog Day! National Dog Day was created back in 2004, and it gives us a chance to stop and appreciate those who offer us their unconditional love, support, and acceptance: our pups!
    August 26 is National Dog Day! National Dog Day was created back in 2004, and it gives us a chance to stop and appreciate those who offer us their unconditional love, support, and acceptance: our pups!
  • Seven Arrested in Kalispell Sex Sting

    Seven Arrested in Kalispell Sex Sting

    Friday, August 22 2014 3:10 PM EDT2014-08-22 19:10:39 GMT
    A four-day online sex sting ends with the arrest of seven Flathead men for sexual abuse of children, and more arrests are pending.
    A four-day online sex sting ends with the arrest of seven Flathead men for sexual abuse of children, and more arrests are pending.
  • More Details On The Sex Sting Seven

    More Details On The Sex Sting Seven

    Saturday, August 23 2014 12:07 AM EDT2014-08-23 04:07:34 GMT
    Seven men sit behind bars and more could be headed that way after a four-day investigation headed by the Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force.
    Seven men sit behind bars and more could be headed that way after a four-day investigation headed by the Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force.
  • Spokane County prosecutor accused of helping out wanted felon

    Spokane County prosecutor accused of helping out wanted felon

    Monday, August 25 2014 9:05 PM EDT2014-08-26 01:05:52 GMT
    SPOKANE, Wash. - Newly unsealed court documents detail an alleged relationship between a Spokane County inmate and Spokane County Deputy Prosecutor. 
    SPOKANE, Wash. - Newly unsealed court documents detail an alleged relationship between a Spokane County inmate and Spokane County Deputy Prosecutor. Court documents say Spokane deputy prosecutor Marriya Wright and Matthew Baumrucker exchanged nearly 1300 text messages while he was wanted by police. Wright is being investigated for rendering criminal assistance and is on paid administrative leave.
  • OSHA Investigates Kalispell Walmart After Employee Death

    OSHA Investigates Kalispell Walmart After Employee Death

    Monday, August 25 2014 8:14 PM EDT2014-08-26 00:14:59 GMT
    An OSHA team investigates the death of a Kalispell Walmart employee who fell from a ladder on Friday.
    An OSHA team investigates the death of a Kalispell Walmart employee who fell from a ladder on Friday.
  • Gang Violence Slows Down In Missoula

    Gang Violence Slows Down In Missoula

    Tuesday, August 26 2014 12:12 PM EDT2014-08-26 16:12:43 GMT
    An autopsy shows gang symbols were carved into it Gilbert Barry's body, the man who was shot and killed before being thrown into the Clark Fork River.
    An autopsy shows gang symbols were carved into it Gilbert Barry's body, the man who was shot and killed before being thrown into the Clark Fork River.
Powered by WorldNow

Features

  • More Features
  • Powered by WorldNow
    All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and Cowles Montana Media. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.