With the progress of reducing the “traditional” tracking of LODDs, there are two other areas claiming far more firefighter lives than the “traditional” method. Those two areas are cancer and suicide.
Remember Life Safety Initiative #1: “Define and advocate the need for a cultural change within the fire service relating to safety; incorporating leadership, management, supervision, accountability and personal responsibility.”
As the smoke begins to settle on the information harvested from COVID-19, some changes in the fire service are inevitable.
Elected officials do not see the value of their fire departments and firefighters learning new and better ways to operate or learn about the latest equipment innovations and development. Sadly, neither does the public.
At the risk of “piling on,” here is another article about COVID-19. There are many lessons learned from this worldwide pandemic. Some of these lessons will change our way of living in many areas.
National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 1901, Standard on Automotive Fire Apparatus, has a 22-page section titled “Purchasing Specification Form.” It is an excellent guide in developing specifications and communicating those specifications to your apparatus bidders/builder.
So, what must the fire service do? The answers aren’t easy. However, to get a start, the fire service must become educated and, in turn, the stakeholders and the public must be educated.
The 17-page report provides data on what the cost would be across the nation to remedy five identified shortcomings.
: The annual estimated cost of firefighter injuries is between $1.6 billion and $5.9 billion. This translates to an estimated cost per fire department that ranges from $50,000 to $200,000.
Unfortunately, there is very little discussion, compared with bunker gear coats and pants, on how to minimize the risks of carcinogens and other chemicals that create health hazards for firefighters.