Firefighter Exposure Tracking system approved by Elkhart Board of Public Safety

NOW: Firefighter Exposure Tracking system approved by Elkhart Board of Public Safety

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ELKHART, Ind. – During a public safety meeting on Tuesday board members put forward a plan to simplify the process of determining when firefighters are exposed to smoke or dangerous chemicals.

The proposed plan would make it easier to track specific incidents instead of processing individual reports, which can be time consuming.

The alternative would be to fill out a tracking form at the time of an incident.

The new system would eliminate a multi-step process that is involved in reporting an injury. If anything bad happens while on the job, the tracking system would allow firefighters to access their records quickly.

The board approved the proposal on Tuesday, so firefighters will now have to record their incidents.

Steve Kamp, the Elkhart Fire Chief, said that the goal of the new system is to detect cancer early on.

“With cancer being the number one killer of firefighters nowadays,” Kamp said, “it has become prevalent to document and make sure our firefighters are doing that by putting in a policy and adding it to our everyday routine.”

Kamp went on to say that this could evolve into a statewide initiative.

“By starting our own and doing our own,” Kamp said, “this will give us that data that we need to for our future, for possibly the state of Indiana, as well as the fire department, and the firefighter and their families.”

The change is nothing unusual for the department, and now firefighters are already updating the system by including information from previous incidents.

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