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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.


NIOSH Health Hazard Evaluation Finds Job Stress and Mental Health Symptoms at a Fire Department Impacted by the Opioid Epidemic and Budget Cuts
A recent NIOSH Health Hazard Evaluation found high job stress and depression/anxiety symptoms among fire fighters at a municipal fire department. Impacted by the opioid epidemic and layoffs, this department responded to 1,000 more calls in 2016 than in 2011. Thirteen per cent of the participating fire fighters screened positive for symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). NIOSH recommended training on suicide prevention, psychological first aid, and stress recognition, as well as training on opioid overdose response and additions to the bloodborne pathogen exposure control plan. Request an HHE or call (513) 841-4382.

Safety Tip

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Phase in a mandatory comprehensive wellness and fitness program for fire fighters.