Fire Fighters spraying water on massive fire

The United States depends on about 1.1 million fire fighters to protect its citizens and property from fire. Approximately 336,000 are career fire fighters, 812,000 are volunteers, and 80 to 100 die in the line of duty each year.

To address this occupational hazard, the NIOSH Fire Fighter Fatality Investigation and Prevention Program conducts independent investigations of fire fighter line-of-duty deaths.


Hot Filling Hazards with SCBA Air Cylinders

cover of NIOSH numbered doc 2021-111

Rapidly filling an air cylinder, also known as “hot filling,” generates excessive heat and can result in a loss of pressure as the cylinder cools leaving the user with reduced breathing air. During routine filling, air cylinders should be filled in accordance with manufacturer’s instructions to ensure they are filled to their rated capacity. Fire departments should ensure that cylinders are stored fully charged to maximize use and capacity. Download the PPE Case Notespdf icon to learn more about hot filling hazards.

Safety Tip
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Phase in a mandatory comprehensive wellness and fitness program for firefighters.

Page last reviewed: August 24, 2020