Most fire departments throughout the Unites States require applicants to pass a physical exam prior to being hired for the position of firefighter. However, in many instances fire departments do not continue to monitor the firefighter’s physical fitness on a yearly basis thereafter. NFPA 1582, Standard on Comprehensive Occupational Medical Program for Fire Departments, 2013 Edition, requires that all members receive an annual evaluation in Chapter 7 Occupational Medical Evaluation of Members.
Chapter 7 Occupational Medical Evaluation of Members
7.1.1 The fire department shall establish and maintain a confidential occupational medical evaluation program for members.
7.1.2 Occupational medical evaluations shall be conducted as a baseline for surveillance and annually thereafter.
7.1.3* An occupational medical evaluation shall be performed following a member’s occupational exposure, illness, injury, or protracted absence from the job.
One department, although not conducting medical evaluations in accordance with NFPA 1582 on an annual basis, has established a wellness/fitness policy that requires firefighter’s to engage in physical fitness for one hour on eight out of every ten shifts. The policy has been met with resistance, and members could face disciplinary action for their lack of participation. Check out the full article on the Ohio firefighters here… Are you and the members of your department fit for duty???