For the Record 4/23

April 10, 2023
The IAFF filed suit against the NFPA for its role in imposing a testing standard for turnout gear that the IAFF says effectively requires the use of PFAS in firefighter protective gear.

IAFF Sues NFPA over Gear Testing

The IAFF filed suit on March 16, 2023, against the NFPA for its role in imposing a testing standard for turnout gear that the IAFF says effectively requires the use of PFAS in firefighter protective gear. The IAFF stated that a provision that’s in NFPA 1971: Standard on Protective Ensembles for Structural Fire Fighting and Proximity Fire Fighting requires certain components of bunker gear to pass the 40-hour Ultraviolet Light Degradation Test. “The only substance that can pass the test for that long is PFAS,” the IAFF stated.

The lawsuit is about “removing the cancer-causing chemicals in our gear and finding justice for our brother and sister members,” IAFF General President Edward Kelly said.

For more about the lawsuit, go to

SFPE: Large-Scale Fire Event Health Effects Research Gaps

The SFPE (Society of Fire Protection Engineers) Foundation’s research into the environmental and health effects of fire and fire-suppression activities during large-scale fire events uncovered 12 gaps in knowledge and analysis that must be closed to fully appreciate and understand all aspects of the issue. Notable among these are that incident monitoring programs are wildfire fire-centric; datasets on injuries from large-scale events don’t exist; and the psychological effect of large-scale events has focused largely on wildfires. The Foundation stressed a need for the fire protection engineering community to align its research efforts with safety, health and environmental professionals to rectify the situation.

To read the report, visit

Globe Gear Giveaway 2023

MSA, DuPont Personal Protection and the National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) are teaming up again in 2023 to provide 13 in-need volunteer fire departments with four sets of state-of-the-art turnout gear and four helmets through MSA and DuPont’s annual Globe Gear Giveaway program to increase firefighter safety.

To be eligible to apply, departments must:

  • Be more than 50 percent volunteer
  • Serve a population of 25,000 or fewer
  • Be located in the United States or Canada
  • Be a member of the NVFC (MSA will provide complimentary memberships to the first 500 applicants)
  • Demonstrate a need for the gear

The deadline to apply is June 1, 2023.

For more information, visit

Safety Stand Down 2023

The theme of the 2023 Safety Stand Down campaign is “Lithium-ion Batteries: Are You Ready?” The event, which will take place June 18–24, 2023, is a joint initiative of the International Association of Fire Chiefs Safety, Health and Survival Section, the National Volunteer Fire Council, the NFPA and the Fire Department Safety Officers Association. Responder agencies are encouraged to suspend all nonemergency activities during this week to focus on training and education that’s related to lithium-ion battery safety awareness and education.

For resources and training videos, visit


Seven U.S. firefighters died in the line of duty. Four died during fireground operations, two died from a health-related incident and one died from injuries that were sustained in a motor vehicle accident while en route to a call. This issue of Firehouse is dedicated to these firefighters.

Chief Todd Yandre, 61, of the Lake Mills, WI, Fire Department, died on Feb. 15. Yandre attended live fire training on Feb. 14 and Feb. 15. In the evening of the second day, while at his local gym, he collapsed and was pronounced dead at the scene of an apparent heart attack.

Chief Steven Smith, 46, of the Pebble Volunteer Fire Department in Haleyville, AL, died on Feb. 19. Smith was involved in a single-vehicle crash in his private vehicle while on the way to the scene of a fire. He was rushed to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Firefighter Paul Cloutier, 52, of the Webster, MA, Fire Department, died on Feb. 21. Apparently, while preparing to respond to the scene of a water rescue, he suffered a medical emergency. He was found dead the next dead in his vehicle.

Lt. Ethan Quillen, 28, of the Paw Paw, MI, Fire Department, died on Feb. 22. Quillen was operating with crews at the scene of wires down and trees on fire when a tree broke and caused a power line to collapse and strike him. He was rushed to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Apparatus Operator Ricky Hill Jr., 49, of the Flint, MI, Fire Department, died on Feb. 25. While on scene of a vacant mobile home fire, Hill suffered a medical emergency and collapsed. He was transported to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead. A heart attack was being considered the cause of death.

Firefighter Jason Arno, 37, of the Buffalo, NY, Fire Department, died on March 1. A backdraft during a fire at a commercial building led to a rapid deterioration of the situation and the collapse of the interior. Firefighters were evacuated. Arno was reported missing shortly after. He became trapped and a mayday was called. Arno was found dead in the building a short time later.

Forest Technician Rocky Wood, 53, of the Virginia Department of Forestry, died on March 9. While scouting the area of a wildfire to determined where to create a containment line, the ATV that Wood was driving overturned. He died as a result of the injuries that he sustained in the accident. Wood also was the chief of the Haysi, VA, Fire Department.

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