Firefighter Training, Firefighting, Leadership

International Association of Fire Chiefs gets $989,068 grant from DHS

The U. S. Department of Homeland Security’s Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program has awarded a $989,068 grant to the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) from the Fire Prevention and Safety Category to continue managing and expanding the National Fire Fighter Near-Miss Reporting System.

The program popularly recognized as www.firefighternearmiss.com is a firefighter safety data collection and resource site entering its third year of operation. The program has collected over 1,800 reports since its inception. Based on fire service feedback, the program is successfully helping fire departments and firefighters in efforts to improve firefighter safety.

IAFC President Steven P. Westermann highlighted the success of the program. “We are very excited to receive news that DHS is awarding this grant. The firefighter near-miss reporting system continues to gain favor among a growing number of firefighters across the country because of its concerted efforts to share information and promote safety. I am proud to be associated with the program and encourage fire chiefs across the country to join me in endorsing the use of the program by their members. Let none among us be ashamed to share information about events that have occurred in our departments only to witness that the withheld information cost another firefighter his/her life.”

Dennis Smith, acclaimed fire service author and president of First Responders Financial, hailed the award as a milestone for firefighter safety. Smith, who serves as chair to the advisory board that oversees www.firefighternearmiss.com, said, “The National Fire Fighter Near-Miss Reporting System is just one of the many shining stars of the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program. The way the fire service is embracing this easy-to-use and valuable tool is excellent. I am proud to be associated with this program and extremely happy to hear that DHS has recognized the value of the program to firefighters by funding it for another year.”

For more information on the system, visit www.firefighternearmiss.com.