FIRE FIGHTER FATALITY INVESTIGATION AND PREVENTION

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.

Spotlight

Recent Firefighter  Struck-By Incidents

In the past few weeks, several members of the fire service have died in the line-of-duty from motor vehicle struck-by events at the scene of motor vehicle crashes. It is important that fire officers regularly review department standard operating procedures and FFFIPP struck-by report recommendations with their crews to prevent similar incidents.

Summary of Investigation Recommendations

A study of FFFIPP report recommendations from 2006-2014, identified the top 10 most frequently occurring recommendation categories. The categories were: 1. Medical screening, 2. Fitness and wellness programs, 3. Training, 4. Medical clearance, 5. Standard Operating Procedures/Standard Operating Guidelines, 6. Incident command, 7. Strategy and tactics, 8. Communications, 9. Personal protective equipment and 10. Staffing.

Assessing Occupational Injuries among Firefighters

This ongoing study involves phone interviews of firefighters who were treated at select emergency departments for injuries or exposures that happened while working. This project aims to reduce injuries and exposures among firefighters and is supported by the International Association of Fire Fighters, the National Volunteer Fire Council, the International Association of Fire Chiefs, and the National Fire Protection Association. For information, contact Suzanne Marsh at (304) 285-6009 or SMMarsh@cdc.gov.

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

Page last reviewed: November 22, 2019