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Physiological responses of Police Officers during job simulations wearing chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear personal protective equipment.

Ergonomics; 56(1): 137-47, 2013.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-23140326
UNLABELLED: The aim of this study was to quantify the physiological responses of Police Officers wearing chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear personal protective equipment (CBRN PPE) during firearms house entry (FE) unarmed house entry (UE) and crowd control (CC) simulations. Participants volunteered from the UK Police Force [FE (n = 6, age 33 ± 4 years, body mass 85.3 ± 7.9 kg, (·)VO2max 53 ± 5 ml · kg⁻¹ · min⁻¹), UE and CC (n = 11, age 34 ± 5 years, body mass 88.5 ± 13.8 kg, (·)VO2max 51 ± 5 ml · kg⁻¹ · min⁻¹)]. Heart rate reserve (HRR) during FE was greater than UE (74 ± 7 vs. 62 ± 6%HRR, p = 0.01) but lower in CC (39 ± 7%HRR, p < 0.01). Peak core body temperature was greater during FE (39.2 ± 0.3°C) than UE (38.9 ± 0.4°C, p < 0.01) and CC (37.5 ± 0.3°C, p < 0.01), with similar trends in skin temperature. There were no differences in the volume of water consumed (1.13 ± 0.44 l, p = 0.51) or change in body mass (-1.68 ± 0.65 kg, p = 0.74) between simulations. The increase in body temperature was a primary physiological limitation to performance. Cooling strategies and revised operating procedures may improve Police Officers' physical performance while wearing CBRN PPE. PRACTITIONER SUMMARY: In recent years, the likelihood of Police Officers having to respond to a chemical, biological, nuclear or radiological (CBRN) incident wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) has increased. Such apparel is likely to increase physiological strain and impair job performance; understanding these limitations may help improve Officer safety and operational effectiveness.