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Report shows excess mortality from cancer among firefighters

Ⓒ AFP – FRANCOIS GUILLOT – | FIREFIGHTERS / Intervention

A report, revealed by the daily La Provence and which AFP was able to consult on Friday, reports an excess mortality by cancer in firefighters and points out the role of toxic fumes to which they are exposed during fires.

After reading this report, the Minister of the Interior decided to refer to his health counterpart for medical and scientific appraisals on the consequences of these fumes on firefighters, according to a spokesman for the Civil Security .

“The Director General of Civil Security has decided without delay to send a note to the departmental directors for the implementation of preventive measures,” the spokesman added, adding that a brochure would be published in January.

Once the Ministry of Interior has the conclusions of the report produced by the state services, “concrete and regulatory measures will be taken”.

Commissioned by the CNRACL, the report assesses “the exposure of firefighters to fumes and their contaminants in fires”.

The working group emphasizes that young firefighters are in an “excellent initial state of health” because of the “recruitment mode”, but as they age they no longer enjoy the “under-mortality” they had before.

The authors note that “over 732 malignant tumors, bronchopulmonary cancer was the most frequent localization (25%), followed by cancers of the lip-oral cavity-pharynx ( 9%), cancers of the liver and bile ducts (6%), pancreas (6%), and lymphatic and haematopoietic tissues (6%).

Finally, “in addition to known acute poisoning” such as carbon monoxide poisoning and asphyxiation, other pathologies have been discovered “often in disabling or severe forms and after many years: cardiovascular disorders and diseases -vascular diseases, pneumopathies and cancers “.

The report advises, among many measures, to “integrate the risks of contamination in the design of fire and rescue centers, training centers, equipment, materials and equipment”.

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