Death in the Line of Duty

The National Institutes for Occupational Safety and Health’s Firefighter Fatality Investigation and Prevention Program presents the results of investigations of fireground incidents that turned deadly.


Editor’s note: The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Firefighter Fatality Investigation and Prevention Program conducts investigations of firefighter line-of-duty deaths to formulate recommendations for preventing future deaths and injuries. The program does not seek to...


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CAUSE OF DEATH

The cause of death for both victims was listed by the coroner as asphyxia due to environmental oxygen deprivation, smoke inhalation and acute carbon monoxide poisoning.

RECOMMENDATIONS

  • Fire departments should provide firefighters with wildland personal protective equipment that is National Fire Protection Association n (NFPA) 1997 compliant and monitor to ensure its use.

  • Fire departments should equip firefighters with approved fire shelters and provide training on the proper deployment of the fire shelter at least annually with periodic refresher courses during the year.

  • Fire departments should utilize National Weather Service (NWS) Fire WX Forecasters for all fire weather predictions and immediately share with all personnel all information about significant fire behavior events (e.g., long-range spotting, torching, spotting and fire whirls).

  • Fire departments should learn, communicate and follow the 10 standard fire orders as developed by the National Wildfire Coordinating Group (NWCG).