The NFPA Firefighter Fatalities in the United States 2008 report was rcently issued. The report provides overall statistics on line-of-duty firefighter fatalities in 2008, including non-incident-related deaths. Includes patterns, trends, career vs. volunteer comparisons, and brief narratives on selected incidents.
In 2008, a total of 103 on-duty firefighter deaths occurred in the U.S. This is the same number of deaths as occurred in the U.S. in 2007, and the fourth time in the last 10 years that the annual total has been 103. The largest share of deaths (39 deaths) occurred while firefighters were responding to or returning from emergency calls.
This includes a single incident which resulted in nine deaths. Stress, exertion, and other medical-related issues, which usually result in heart attacks or other sudden cardiac events, continued to account for the largest number of fatalities. Of the 41 exertion- or stress-related fatalities in 2008, 36 were classified as sudden cardiac deaths.