Wildland and Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) firefighting continues to be among the most hazardous yet least studied occupations in terms of exposures and occupational health and safety risks. Today’s wildland/WUI firefighters experience complex occupational exposures and endure environmental and physiological extremes beyond which the human body was ever meant to endure. As devastating “megafires” become the norm, firefighters will continue facing complicated and evolving exposures.
The Wildfire Conservancy is here to help.
There are an ever-changing number of novel materials in homes, businesses, and vehicles. When these materials combust, they produce dangerous and carcinogenic chemical compounds. This includes an evolving suite of unstudied chemicals so new yet still commonplace, that “safe” exposure levels have never been established (if they exist at all). We are working on a variety of project aimed at identifying interventions that can help reduce respiratory and dermal exposures.
In collaboration with the Fire Fighter Cancer Cohort Study (FFCCS), the Wildfire Conservancy has enrolled over 330 firefighters from CAL FIRE into the largest ongoing cancer study of firefighters in the nation. In collaboration with the University of Arizona and University of Miami, we will be following these firefighters in the coming years to measure occupational exposures and cancer risk.