As the temperature drops, more and more firefighters are on the job due to a rise in house fires.
For rookie fire woman Casey Reinhardt, 29, there was no respite Monday from the sweat and toil of battling a massive apartment building fire on Thurston Road.
Reinhardt bundled up in a full complement of firefighting gear, a protective mask and air tank.
"That’s what we trained for," said Reinhardt. “I’ve never seen a fire so big. I’m brand new and I’ve learned so much and we’re always learning on this job.”
Rochester Fire Department Deputy Chief Thomas May has spent been a part of the force for 30 years. He says the community support has been overwhelming this winter. Still, all too often it’s a sacrifice that goes unnoticed.
"It's not the normal 9-5 job," said May. "Not a lot of breaks are scheduled. For lunch and dinner time, you never know when that’s going to be."
Essentially, May and his crew of firefighters can work a 24-hour shift.
"My wife and three kids are very understanding," added May, who has worked many winter holidays.
Reinhardt says there's no other place she’d rather be.
"There are risks," said Reinhardt. "But I think the team and family aspect and seeing this community is pretty amazing."