FIREFIGHTERS are wearing new kit.

The fresh outfit for the 500 uniformed fire officers in West Sussex retains the service’s traditional yellow fire tunics and leggings, but now includes a lightweight high-vis rescue jacket to wear at the scene of road accidents.

The kit also includes lightweight rescue gloves with reinforced grip and touch-sensitive fingertips, a new helmet designed to protect from heavy impacts and temperatures of more than 300C, and a new fire hood made from three breathable layers to guard against overheating.

The new uniform reflects the evolving role of the firefighter and was designed after listening to feedback from frontline staff.

The contract to supply the kit was agreed with company Bristol Uniforms. It will cost just over £350,000 a year.

Chief Fire Officer Sabrina Cohen-Hatton said: “Having high-performing fire kit is just as important as having good fire engines, breathing apparatus and rescue equipment.

“This latest generation of fire kit improves the safety and comfort of our firefighters at emergencies.”