Impact of a design modification in modern firefighting uniforms on burn prevention outcomes in New York City firefighters

David J. Prezant, Katherine Freeman, Kerry J. Kelly, Kevin S. Malley, Manoj Lal Karwa, Mary T. McLaughlin, Robin Hirschhorn, Audrey Brown

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Our aim was to determine the impact of three different firefighting uniforms (traditional, modern, and modified modern) on the incidence and severity of thermal burn injuries, the major occupational injury affecting firefighters. Injury data were collected prospectively for the entire New York City Fire Department (FDNY) firefighting force wearing FDNY's traditional uniform (protective over-coat) from May 1, 1993 to August 31, 1993; FDNY's modern uniform (protective over-coat and over-pant)from May 1, 1995 to August 31, 1995; and FDNY's modified modern uniform (short sleeved shirt and short pants, rather than long-sleeved shirt and long pants, worn under firefighter's protective over-clothes)from May 1, 1998 to August 31, 1998. Outcome measures were burn incidence and severity. Adverse outcomes were heat exhaustion and cardiac events. During this 12-month study, 29,094 structural fires occurred. The incidence rate for upper extremity burns was 2341 per 100, 000 fires and for lower extremity burns, 2076 per 100, 000 fires. With the change from the traditional to modern uniform, the distribution of burns per fire decreased significantly (P = 0.001)for upper extremity burns (86%) and lower extremity burns (93%). With the change from traditional to modern uniform, days lost to medical leave for upper or lower extremity burns decreased by 89%. The majority of burns occurred at the lower arm and mid-leg, and the change to the modern uniform decreased such burns by 87% and 92%. Burn incidence and severity were not significantly affected by the change to the modified modern uniform. The distribution of heat exhaustion or cardiac events per fire was not significantly affected by the change from the traditional to modern uniform, and heat exhaustion was decreased (P < 0.001) by the change to the modified modern uniform. In conclusion, the modern uniform dramatically reduced burn incidence and severity without adverse impact. The modified modern uniform significantly reduced heat exhaustion without significantly affecting thermal protection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)827-834
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine
Volume42
Issue number8
StatePublished - 2000

Fingerprint

Firefighters
Burns
Heat Exhaustion
Incidence
Lower Extremity
Upper Extremity
Hot Temperature
Occupational Injuries
Clothing
Wounds and Injuries
Leg
Arm
Outcome Assessment (Health Care)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

Cite this

Impact of a design modification in modern firefighting uniforms on burn prevention outcomes in New York City firefighters. / Prezant, David J.; Freeman, Katherine; Kelly, Kerry J.; Malley, Kevin S.; Karwa, Manoj Lal; McLaughlin, Mary T.; Hirschhorn, Robin; Brown, Audrey.

In: Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Vol. 42, No. 8, 2000, p. 827-834.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Prezant, David J. ; Freeman, Katherine ; Kelly, Kerry J. ; Malley, Kevin S. ; Karwa, Manoj Lal ; McLaughlin, Mary T. ; Hirschhorn, Robin ; Brown, Audrey. / Impact of a design modification in modern firefighting uniforms on burn prevention outcomes in New York City firefighters. In: Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine. 2000 ; Vol. 42, No. 8. pp. 827-834.
@article{836827c801c443c7bc9bab11c522a731,
title = "Impact of a design modification in modern firefighting uniforms on burn prevention outcomes in New York City firefighters",
abstract = "Our aim was to determine the impact of three different firefighting uniforms (traditional, modern, and modified modern) on the incidence and severity of thermal burn injuries, the major occupational injury affecting firefighters. Injury data were collected prospectively for the entire New York City Fire Department (FDNY) firefighting force wearing FDNY's traditional uniform (protective over-coat) from May 1, 1993 to August 31, 1993; FDNY's modern uniform (protective over-coat and over-pant)from May 1, 1995 to August 31, 1995; and FDNY's modified modern uniform (short sleeved shirt and short pants, rather than long-sleeved shirt and long pants, worn under firefighter's protective over-clothes)from May 1, 1998 to August 31, 1998. Outcome measures were burn incidence and severity. Adverse outcomes were heat exhaustion and cardiac events. During this 12-month study, 29,094 structural fires occurred. The incidence rate for upper extremity burns was 2341 per 100, 000 fires and for lower extremity burns, 2076 per 100, 000 fires. With the change from the traditional to modern uniform, the distribution of burns per fire decreased significantly (P = 0.001)for upper extremity burns (86{\%}) and lower extremity burns (93{\%}). With the change from traditional to modern uniform, days lost to medical leave for upper or lower extremity burns decreased by 89{\%}. The majority of burns occurred at the lower arm and mid-leg, and the change to the modern uniform decreased such burns by 87{\%} and 92{\%}. Burn incidence and severity were not significantly affected by the change to the modified modern uniform. The distribution of heat exhaustion or cardiac events per fire was not significantly affected by the change from the traditional to modern uniform, and heat exhaustion was decreased (P < 0.001) by the change to the modified modern uniform. In conclusion, the modern uniform dramatically reduced burn incidence and severity without adverse impact. The modified modern uniform significantly reduced heat exhaustion without significantly affecting thermal protection.",
author = "Prezant, {David J.} and Katherine Freeman and Kelly, {Kerry J.} and Malley, {Kevin S.} and Karwa, {Manoj Lal} and McLaughlin, {Mary T.} and Robin Hirschhorn and Audrey Brown",
year = "2000",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "42",
pages = "827--834",
journal = "Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine",
issn = "1076-2752",
publisher = "Lippincott Williams and Wilkins",
number = "8",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Impact of a design modification in modern firefighting uniforms on burn prevention outcomes in New York City firefighters

AU - Prezant, David J.

AU - Freeman, Katherine

AU - Kelly, Kerry J.

AU - Malley, Kevin S.

AU - Karwa, Manoj Lal

AU - McLaughlin, Mary T.

AU - Hirschhorn, Robin

AU - Brown, Audrey

PY - 2000

Y1 - 2000

N2 - Our aim was to determine the impact of three different firefighting uniforms (traditional, modern, and modified modern) on the incidence and severity of thermal burn injuries, the major occupational injury affecting firefighters. Injury data were collected prospectively for the entire New York City Fire Department (FDNY) firefighting force wearing FDNY's traditional uniform (protective over-coat) from May 1, 1993 to August 31, 1993; FDNY's modern uniform (protective over-coat and over-pant)from May 1, 1995 to August 31, 1995; and FDNY's modified modern uniform (short sleeved shirt and short pants, rather than long-sleeved shirt and long pants, worn under firefighter's protective over-clothes)from May 1, 1998 to August 31, 1998. Outcome measures were burn incidence and severity. Adverse outcomes were heat exhaustion and cardiac events. During this 12-month study, 29,094 structural fires occurred. The incidence rate for upper extremity burns was 2341 per 100, 000 fires and for lower extremity burns, 2076 per 100, 000 fires. With the change from the traditional to modern uniform, the distribution of burns per fire decreased significantly (P = 0.001)for upper extremity burns (86%) and lower extremity burns (93%). With the change from traditional to modern uniform, days lost to medical leave for upper or lower extremity burns decreased by 89%. The majority of burns occurred at the lower arm and mid-leg, and the change to the modern uniform decreased such burns by 87% and 92%. Burn incidence and severity were not significantly affected by the change to the modified modern uniform. The distribution of heat exhaustion or cardiac events per fire was not significantly affected by the change from the traditional to modern uniform, and heat exhaustion was decreased (P < 0.001) by the change to the modified modern uniform. In conclusion, the modern uniform dramatically reduced burn incidence and severity without adverse impact. The modified modern uniform significantly reduced heat exhaustion without significantly affecting thermal protection.

AB - Our aim was to determine the impact of three different firefighting uniforms (traditional, modern, and modified modern) on the incidence and severity of thermal burn injuries, the major occupational injury affecting firefighters. Injury data were collected prospectively for the entire New York City Fire Department (FDNY) firefighting force wearing FDNY's traditional uniform (protective over-coat) from May 1, 1993 to August 31, 1993; FDNY's modern uniform (protective over-coat and over-pant)from May 1, 1995 to August 31, 1995; and FDNY's modified modern uniform (short sleeved shirt and short pants, rather than long-sleeved shirt and long pants, worn under firefighter's protective over-clothes)from May 1, 1998 to August 31, 1998. Outcome measures were burn incidence and severity. Adverse outcomes were heat exhaustion and cardiac events. During this 12-month study, 29,094 structural fires occurred. The incidence rate for upper extremity burns was 2341 per 100, 000 fires and for lower extremity burns, 2076 per 100, 000 fires. With the change from the traditional to modern uniform, the distribution of burns per fire decreased significantly (P = 0.001)for upper extremity burns (86%) and lower extremity burns (93%). With the change from traditional to modern uniform, days lost to medical leave for upper or lower extremity burns decreased by 89%. The majority of burns occurred at the lower arm and mid-leg, and the change to the modern uniform decreased such burns by 87% and 92%. Burn incidence and severity were not significantly affected by the change to the modified modern uniform. The distribution of heat exhaustion or cardiac events per fire was not significantly affected by the change from the traditional to modern uniform, and heat exhaustion was decreased (P < 0.001) by the change to the modified modern uniform. In conclusion, the modern uniform dramatically reduced burn incidence and severity without adverse impact. The modified modern uniform significantly reduced heat exhaustion without significantly affecting thermal protection.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0033869360&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=0033869360&partnerID=8YFLogxK

M3 - Article

C2 - 10953821

AN - SCOPUS:0033869360

VL - 42

SP - 827

EP - 834

JO - Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine

JF - Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine

SN - 1076-2752

IS - 8

ER -