Episode 27 – Northern Star Guiding Firefighters


Firefighters depend on their sight when they fight fires. It’s not uncommon for smoke and debris inside a structure to reduce a firefighter’s visibility. The blindness combined with the stress of the environment can lead a firefighter to become disoriented. The longer a firefighter is disoriented, the more at risk they are to lose situational awareness and turn their situation fatal. Luckily Northern Star Fire has created a product to help firefighter reorient themselves when visibility drops.

The Northern Star is an electronic compass designed to be placed inside a firefighter’s SCBA, that displays which direction they are facing. The compass updates in real-time giving the user vital knowledge when blind. The device turns on when the firefighter taps or shakes their mask and turns off when not in use. This feature gives the compass a great battery life that won’t fail when it’s needed most.

No matter how well they’ve trained or how many years of experience they have firefighters can still become victims of disorientation. The Northern Star compass is an easy to use and inexpensive device ($129.95) designed to return to them, their sense of direction. Northern Star Fire’s electronic compass is an invaluable tool that will undoubtedly save lives, and it should be available to every firefighter.