The Second 10

A look at the second 10 line of duty deaths in 2011.


From 20 January to 17 February another ten firefighters died in the line of duty as listed by the United States Fire Administration. The average trend is eight deaths a month considering all the deaths to date. Notable among the second ten are:

An 80-year old volunteer captain who died of a heart attack during a response to structure fire [1]. This is the second fatality where the the victim is over the age of 65. Among the second ten is the second of the youngest deaths. A 26-year old volunteer firefighter died of a medical emergency after a fire [2]. This is the second 26-year old victim for 2011.

A 38-year old recruit died of a heart attack during a training evolution [3]. The recruit was participating in a follow the hoseline evolution when he went in cardiac arrest. Paramedics on the scene quickly performed CPR and delivered ALS measures, unfortunately the recruit died.

A career firefighter became ill while on duty, and left for a doctor’s appointment. He collapsed while enroute and later died [4].

Outside of the recognition of ‘traditional line of duty deaths’ a volunteer assistant chief died of heart attack while doing paperwork [5].

Since the USFA and NFFF announced the recognition of Department of Defense line of duty deaths, an airman assigned to Kadena Air Base, Japan was killed. He was backed over by fire apparatus [6]. This is the first military-related line of duty death for 2011 and the only one at this time.

Considering deaths which occurred during a rescue attempt, a volunteer firefighter drowned while attempting water rescue which he responded to [7].

To date, the average age of all victims is 49. The average age of the second 10 is 44.

Department type of the second 10 deaths is six volunteer firefighters and four career firefighters. Command ranks of the victims are:
1 Chief
1 Assistant Chief
1 Battalion Chief
1 Captain
For the year to date, 14 of the total number of victims are listed as ‘Firefighter’ or another comparable rank. 10 are listed as line or chief officers. For the purpose of these statistics, the death of the fire recruit is counted as ‘Firefighter’ and in a ‘Career’ department, as news reports about the fatality indicated.

Related
“The First 10″ Backstep, January 2011
Fire Service “Sabremetrics” Backstep
2011 Firefighter Fatality Notices, U.S. Fire Administration

Photograph courtesy of author.



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Comments
Ron Ayotte
What is Experience?
Excelent post. Evey day of duty and every run should be a learning experience. Far too many firefighters just look at the duty tour and incident as what I like to call "the shampoo mode"... wet hair, apply shapoo, lather, rinse and repeat".. Our version is put on the gear, get on the truck, go…
2014-10-31 14:23:15
Bill Carey
What is Experience?
You're correct Ed. What did we do with that experience? Did we take as many lessons from it as we could or did we simply file it away as a run in the logbook. Thank you, Bill
2014-10-30 12:55:18
Ed
What is Experience?
Excellent post. The same question may be framed for other than working on the nozzle (e.g., if delivering pump operator training). In addition, even if you went to a lot of fires on the nozzle or as the first in company officer, what did you do with that experience? Reflection and integration of the experience…
2014-10-30 12:37:50
Bill Carey
Wanted: Honest Discernment in Our Fire Service Discussions
Thank you Ed.
2014-10-22 14:26:50
Ed Hartin
Wanted: Honest Discernment in Our Fire Service Discussions
Excellent article Bill!
2014-10-14 12:47:14
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