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So it is easier to see them at night. The light bounces off the reflective clothing and you can see the fireman clearly. Also, you don't expect to see many people walking around wearing metallic silver clothes so the fire fighters are very distinctive.

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8y ago
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8y ago

The pants, coats, and helmets firefighters wear serve two functions. First, the material of the clothing is treated with flame resistant chemicals. So an ember will be kept away from the skin. Second, the "shiny" quality is called reflective. Reflective stripes act the same as reflective lights on a bicycle or car. When light shines on the reflective material, it illuminates. Fires, though full of light in the fire itself, take out the electricity. So buildings are very dark. Lights on helmets, hand held flashlights, or floodlights from outside would illuminate the firefighter. In addition, firefighter gear contains alarms, plus the oxygen tanks set off an alarm when the tank is low on O2. So the alarms plus the reflective clothing makes firefights more visible and easier to find if the firefighter is in trouble.

When the World Trade towers I and 2 came down in NYC on 9/11, a massive dust cloud filled NY streets, turning morning to a shadowy darkness. From multiple sites, all you could hear were firefighter's personal emergency alarms going off along with the cries and screams of pedestrians and residents. The reflective clothing was coated with dust, so the men weren't seen as much as heard.

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6y ago

To enable them to be seen in smoky buildings ! The material is not only brightly coloured - to be seen in daylight, it's also reflective - ti show up under torchlight in dark places !

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Q: Why Fire fighters suit bright and shiny?
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