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Volunteer fire fighter/fire service products salesman dies after being struck by dislodged rescue airbag - South Dakota.
Morgantown, WV: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, FACE F2003-34, 2004 Jul; :1-5
On July 10, 2003, a 50-year-old male volunteer fire fighter/fire service products salesman (the victim) died after being struck by a rescue airbag (high pressure lifting device). The victim was demonstrating the use of rescue airbags when the incident occurred. A set of three airbags had been placed under the rear bumper of a front end loader, coupled together and inflated. The airbags were being deflated when they separated and burst out from under the loader. The middle airbag struck the victim on the head and chest. The victim was immediately treated at the scene by volunteer emergency medical technicians and transported by helicopter to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead later that day. NIOSH investigators concluded that, to minimize the risk of similar incidents, fire departments and fire service products distributors should: 1. provide training to all fire fighters and employees expected to use or demonstrate rescue airbags; 2. follow safety rules for airbag lifting operations (e.g., use cribbing); and, 3. provide and enforce the use of personal protective equipment during airbag demonstrations and use. Additionally, fire service product manufacturers should ensure that information and photographs contained in catalogs, operator's manuals and internet web sites correspond with one another and provide consistent safety information.
Region-8; Fire-fighting-equipment; Accident-prevention; Injury-prevention; Traumatic-injuries; Fire-fighters; Emergency-responders; Protective-equipment; Personal-protective-equipment
Field Studies; Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation
NTIS Accession No.
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Page last reviewed: May 5, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division