Dutchess County Volunteer Firemens Association

Cancer Prevention

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11 Actions for Preventing Cancer in the Fire Service
Published Date: 7/6/15
Numerous studies have shown that firefighters are at
increased risk of many types of cancer. The Firefighter
Cancer Support Network released a white paper in 2013
on cancer in the fire service and what firefighters can do
to prevent it. The paper included 11 immediate actions
you can take to protect yourself against cancer. Find
additional resources for taking action against cancer in
the fire service from FCSN and NVFC.
11 Immediate Actions to Protect Against Cancer
1. Use SCBA from initial attack to finish of
overhaul(not wearing SCBA in both active and
post-fire environments is the most dangerous
voluntary activity in the fire service today)
2. Do gross field decon of PPE to remove as much
soot and particulates as possible.
3. Use Wet-nap or baby wipes to remove as much
soot as possible from head, neck, and jaw, throat,
under arms and hands immediately and while still
on the scene.
4. Change your clothes and wash them immediately
after a fire.
5. Shower thoroughly after a fire.
6. Clean your PPE, gloves, hood and helmet
immediately after a fire.
7. Do not take contaminated clothes or PPE home
or store it in your vehicle
8. Decon fire apparatus interior after fires.
9. Keep bunker gear out of the living and sleeping
quarters
10. Stop using tobacco products.
11. Use sunscreen or sun block
The importance of annual medical examinations cannot
be overstated - early detection and early treatment are
essential to increasing survival.
*Source: Firefighter Cancer Support Network