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North Carolina fire department fined for workplace accidents risk

Oct 3, 2014 Brown Moore Workers' Compensation

When it comes to fighting fires, it is imperative that the equipment that firefighters use is up-to-date and in proper working order. If such equipment has flaws, a firefighter could very easily be put in considerable danger while trying to perform their on-the-job duties. Burns, smoke inhalation, or other serious injuries are typical hazards for a firefighter, but if they are not able to take proper safety precautions, workplace accidents could take place.

A fire department in North Carolina was recently cited for violations of safety procedures. It was reported that some of the equipment being used was faulty and that workers were not provided training for certain situations. The investigation into the department started after a complaint about 16 potential violations was brought to the attention of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

Of the three citations issued in relation to the investigation, two were considered serious and came with attached fines. Those violations were in regard to the turnout gear that firefighters use as protection against fires and a lack of an updated control plan. As a result, the fire department is currently looking at a $6,500 penalty. The third violation did not have any fines associated with it.

The majority of individuals are aware that fighting fires are a more risky occupation than other professions. However, the proper safety precautions can help lessen the likelihood of an unfortunate event taking place on the job. If North Carolina workers are not given correctly functioning equipment and are not trained on how to perform during certain situations, serious injuries or fatalities could occur due to workplace accidents.

Source:, “Winston-Salem Fire Department issued three citations from OSHA; face $6,500 penalty“, Michael Hewlett, Sept. 16, 2014