VIDEO: They put their lives on the line, but fire isn't the only danger.
KETV NewsWatch 7 Investigates discovered dozens of Omaha firefighters were treated for cancer in a 20-month period.
“Just by chance, I went to the first cancer class for firefighters right after all the studies started coming out,” said Frank Corcoran, vice president of the Omaha Professional Firefighters Association. “About half an hour into class, I'm like, ‘This guy's talking to me.’”
Corcoran told KETV NewsWatch 7 in the last seven years, he's had more than 40 skin cancers removed from his head, neck and arms.
“It's normal to be dirty in those areas,” Corcoran explained.
He said Local 385 union records show 36 members were treated for various cancers from January 2016 to August 2018.
Dr. Ralph Hauke with Nebraska Cancer Specialists has worked with firefighters throughout the metro.
Corcoran said several Omaha firefighters have died of cancer in recent years, including Captain Laura Larson.