Annual report on firefighter fatalities in the United States

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The objective of the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) study “Firefighter Fatalities in the United States” is to identify and analyze all on-duty firefighter fatalities to increase understanding of their causes and how they can be prevented. The study is intended to help identify approaches that could reduce the number of deaths in future years.

2018 annual report

Firefighter fatalities in the United States in 2018

Download the report PDF 2.6 MB

Data visualization: firefighter fatality causes

causes of firefighter fatalities in 2018

View data visualization

JPG , PNG , SVG 1920 x 1080px, < 300 KB | PDF 1.3 MB

Table: firefighter fatality causes open + close -

Stress or overexertion37
Vehicle crashes12
Struck by object10
Structure collapse6
Caught or trapped4
Lost or disoriented1

On-duty firefighter deaths in 2018

44 Volunteer
33 Career
5 Wildland
82Firefighters died while on duty.
33Firefighters died from heart attacks.
42Firefighters died from activities related to an emergency incident.
30Firefighters died from activities at a fire scene.
9Firefighters died while participating in training activities.
10Firefighters died while responding to or returning from emergency incidents.

1986-2017 annual firefighter fatality reports

See also: Fire-Related Firefighter Injuries Reported to the National Fire Incident Reporting System (2015–2017) July 2019

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More resources on firefighter fatalities

Firefighter Autopsy Protocol  PDF 2.6 MB
This protocol helps with the analysis of causes related to firefighter deaths, which can aid in the development of improved firefighter health and safety equipment, procedures and standards. It also helps determine eligibility for death benefits under the Public Safety Officers' Benefits Program.

National Fallen Firefighters Foundation
The Foundation provides peer counseling, training and technical assistance for families and coworkers of firefighters who were killed in the line of duty. It also creates publications and reference materials that can be used to build public awareness for the many contributions made by members of the fire service.

Public Safety Officers' Benefits Program
The Public Safety Officers' Benefits Program provides benefits to survivors of fallen firefighters, Emergency Medical Services members and other first responders. The Program also provides disability benefits for public safety officers who are permanently disabled following an injury while in the line of duty.