If your house is burning down, or you are in a situation where you need to be rescued, First Responder’s are the first line of defense when it comes to your safety.
In particular, paramedics, emergency response personnel, and especially, firefighters, are showing signs of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, PTSD, similar to the levels of combat veterans.
While firefighters aren’t exposed to the same type of trauma soldiers see in a theater of war, elements of their daily job can be traumatic with the sheer volume of calls, the nature of the job and the possibility of losing a colleague in the line of duty, said Alvin White, president of the Houston Professional Fire Fighters Association.
White said firefighters also have difficulties proving that health issues, including cancer, can be linked to on-the-job exposure.
“The No. 1 cause of death among firefighters is not from the fire itself, but from the occupational exposures to the toxins and carcinogens at the fire scene and exposure to diesel exhaust,” the report said.
Tasha Kheirridin spoke with Frank Ramagnano, president of the Toronto Professional Fire Fighters Association, about the tough situations that firefighters put themselves through everyday, PTSD, and what they are doing to combat the emotional toll on their members.