July 21, 2004
NIOSH, Federal Emergency Management Agency Join in Study of Ambulance, Emergency Vehicle Employer Injuries
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Contact: Fred Blosser (202) 401-3749
The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) has been joined by the Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in an ongoing NIOSH study of ambulance and emergency medical vehicles crash data.
The NIOSH Evaluation of Emergency Services Vehicle Occupant Safety Project involves the review of data on ambulance crash statistics, hazard identification and task analysis, determination of appropriate crash testing methodologies, development of occupant restraint systems and modeling of ambulance crash scenarios. NIOSH expects to complete the analysis by the fall of 2004.
"This innovative partnership bolsters our efforts to protect the health and safety of firefighters and emergency responders," said NIOSH Director John Howard, M.D. "This project reflects NIOSH's commitment to enhance occupational safety through research and outreach."
"With vehicle crashes the second leading cause of firefighter fatalities, our work with NIOSH is important in order to enhance the safety of firefighters and emergency responders and to prevent these heart-breaking line of duty deaths," said Michael D. Brown, Under Secretary of Homeland Security for Emergency Preparedness and Response, in a June 30 FEMA announcement. "Secretary Ridge and U.S. Fire Administrator Paulison join me in support for this study, with the hopes of ensuring firefighters go home to their families after each event."
More information about NIOSH research and recommendations to prevent work-related motor-vehicle deaths and injuries can be found on the NIOSH web page at http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/injury/traumamv.html . More information on FEMA’s emergency vehicle programs and projects can be found at: http://www.usfa.fema.gov/inside-usfa/research/safety/vehicle.shtm.
NIOSH is part of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It is the federal agency that conducts research and makes recommendations for preventing work-related injuries, illnesses, and deaths. http://www.cdc.gov/niosh.
On March 1, 2003, FEMA became part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. FEMA's continuing mission within the new department is to lead the effort to prepare the nation for all hazards and effectively manage federal response and recovery efforts following any national incident. FEMA also initiates proactive mitigation activities, trains first responders, and manages the National Flood Insurance Program and the U.S. Fire Administration.
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