DETROIT (WJBK) - As Detroit and the rest of the Midwest battles through an arctic freeze, first responders have an even harder job than usual. On Thursday, Detroit firefighters were dealing with some serious blazes and dangerously low temps.
Firefighters fight the fire but also the equipment that can struggle in the cold.
"When water gets between the grooves, it freezes and expands and it's almost impossible to take this on and off," Detroit Fire Dept. Captain Christopher Dixon said, while explaining one issue with a hose coupling.
The coupling is just one problem when combating fire and cold. So firefighters get crafty and the solution for this is the exhaust pipe from the engine itself.
"It could be a matter of moments. There's a lot of heat coming out of there," Dixon said.
That's after the fire.
During a raging fire at a home on Freer Street in southwest Detroit, one firefighter risked his life when he straddled the roof of the home. He punched through the roof so he could get get water on the fire - dousing himself in the process.
"We were in there for a while, so it was coming back down on me," Luc Wechsung said.
He's a rookie. The Freer fire was no joke but they eventually got it under control and eventually out.
After the fire, they pull their gear off, hose it down again, and then dry it out.
With the job done, the firefighters and their get some heat and hot coffee to warm up - before they have to do it all over again.