PHOENIX, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -- On the first 100 degree day of 2019, firefighters said they stay safe by following several key precautions.
"The emergencies we face are the emergencies we see all year long, but the temperature does present a challenge to us,” said Capt. Kenny Overton, Phoenix Fire.
WATCH VIDEO: As temperatures climb firefighter work harder
According the Bureau of Labor Statistics, overexertion, like heat stroke, causes half of all firefighter injuries in the United States. In fact, statics show that overexertion is more dangerous than actual fires.
[RELATED: Is the weather in Arizona making you sick?]
Research by National Fire Protection Association indicates the summer months, particularly July, are when firefighters are most likely to be hurt.
"By the time you feel that you're thirsty, you're probably already dehydrated,” Overton stated, “so we encourage (firefighters) to drink up to a gallon of water a day."
Firefighters say another key to staying safe is rotating crews in and out of situations, so they do not get overly tired.
"Crews work for shorter period of time, we recycle in new crews and get other crews to rehab," Overton told Arizona’s Family.
Across the country, the number of firefighters hurt on the job started trending up in 2010.
Precautions taken during the summer season aim to change that, as temperatures spike.