Firefighters work to save lives. Now research is showing their own lives are in danger from exposure to cancer causing chemicals. January is Cancer Awareness month. With that in mind, KGUN9 learned more about how Northwest Fire District works to protect its firefighters.
Firefighters can put their lives in immediate danger almost every single day. But now there’s a growing realization that that working lifestyle can lead to long term danger—of cancer far in the future.”
When a modern building burns it’s not just wood and paint it’s all sorts of hazardous materials, as plastics and synthetic fabrics become toxic to breathe and toxic to the touch.
Northwest Fire District Assistant Chief Scott Hamblen says, “We used to say that firefighters were at extreme risk for cardiac arrest or some sort of major medical issue and in fact, firefighter deaths related to cancer have surpassed that number.”