How Nevada agencies respond to firefighter suicides outpacing line of duty deaths

  • Source: KRNV-DT NBC 4 Reno
  • Published: 07/17/2020 12:00 AM

Nationwide, firefighter suicides have been growing and are continuing to outpace line of duty deaths. It's a trend that has persisted in the last few years, especially for states like Nevada and California who are hit hardest by wildfires. One study found that 37 percent of fire and EMS professionals have contemplated suicide, nearly 10 times the rate of American adults. In 2017, there were 103 reported firefighter suicides and 93 line-of-duty deaths. The Firefighter Behavioral Health Alliance estimates about 40% of firefighter suicides are reported and if this estimate is correct, the actual number of suicides would be 257, more than doubling the number of line-of-duty deaths. At least two Nevada firefighters have committed suicide in the past year, including a Truckee Meadows firefighter who took his own life in 2019. That loss of life hit Northern Nevada emergency response agencies especially hard and forced a re-evaluation of their mental health approach.


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