Originally published: April 10, 2017
At five feet tall with a thin frame, Danica Johnson isn't the first person many people would peg as a firefighter.
But that's a stigma, she said, built on a central misunderstanding about what the duties of a volunteer firefighter actually entail.
"Not everything is lifting 300-pound items," said Johnson, a volunteer firefighter for the past three years in Yarmouth, N.S.
At scene of a fire or accident, firefighters are needed to control traffic, refill air tanks and perform a myriad of other tasks that don't involve dragging someone out of a building. And Johnson's size comes in handy because she can fit into tight spots someone who is over six feet tall just can't.