Burbank, California – The nonprofit Firefighter Cancer Support Network (FCSN) announced today a sustaining partnership with Rescue Air Systems, known for its innovative firefighter air replenishment system (FARS). FARS is a permanently installed air replenishment system, an air standpipe that is part of a building’s structure.
Firefighters are exposed to carcinogens at every fire, and cancer is a leading cause of firefighter line-of-duty deaths in the United States. Cancer caused 62 percent of line-of-duty deaths for career firefighters in 2015, according to International Association of Fire Fighters data. Since 2005, FCSN has provided assistance and one-on-one mentoring to thousands of cancer-stricken firefighters and their families.
FCSN also delivers extensive firefighter cancer awareness and prevention training nationwide. A key cancer-prevention strategy for firefighters: Using the clean air provided by self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) the entire time they’re fighting a fire.
“We share FCSN’s urgency when it comes to preventing firefighter cancer,” said Anthony Turiello, CEO of Rescue Air Systems. “Today’s fires are hotter and much more toxic than they used to be. Firefighters need clean air to protect themselves as they’re saving lives and extinguishing fires. RescueAir believes FCSN’s cancer assistance and prevention programs are making a significant difference for our friends in the fire service. We’re glad to be in a position to support them.”
FCSN relies on charitable donations from individuals, families, charitable organizations, and corporate sponsors to deliver its unique firefighter cancer support, awareness, and prevention programs. Although FCSN does not endorse any product or service, we are pleased to count RescueAir as an official FCSN sustaining partner.
“Staying on air from initial fire attack through overhaul reduces firefighters’ exposure to carcinogens,” said FCSN VP of Education Keith Tyson, a 34-year veteran firefighter retired from the Miami-Dade Fire Rescue Department. “Air management is critical on the fireground—we now know it’s critical for firefighters’ long-term health, too—so an installed air replenishment system is a welcome option.”
Cancer is a looming personal catastrophe for every firefighter. Multiple studies, including a federal National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) cancer study released in 2013, have repeatedly illustrated higher rates of multiple types of cancers in firefighters compared to the general American population.
FCSN’s 2013 white paper, “Taking Action Against Cancer in the Fire Service,” provides lifesaving details about recognizing and reducing firefighters’ cancer risks. It’s available as a free download from http://bit.ly/1VHZvZT.