The Pine Bluff Fire & Emergency Services Department will be participating in the National 2019 Firefighter Safety Stand Down during the week of June 16-22.

This event highlights critical safety, health, and survival issues for the fire and emergency services, according to a news release.

“Due to our participation of Firefighter Safety Stand Down week, we will limit all non-emergency activities (community events, etc.) in order to focus on training,” a Pine Bluff Fire & Emergency Services official said in the release.

All personnel will be taking the week to focus their attention on safety and health education and training. A week is provided to ensure all duty shifts can participate, according to the release.

“Safety Stand Down is the unification of the International Association of Fire Chief’s Fire/EMS Safety, Health and Survival Week with the National Volunteer Firefighters Council’s National Firefighter Health Week. The goal of both organizations is to reduce the number of preventable injuries and deaths in the fire and emergency services,” according to the release. “Safety Stand Down focuses on the critical importance of responders taking care of themselves both on and off the emergency incident scene. The week is designed to increase awareness and action so that safety and health become a priority in all fire and emergency service departments.”

The theme is Reduce Your Exposure: It’s Everyone’s Responsibility and firefighters are urged to consider cancer risks, according to the release.

“Cancer is one of the most serious threats facing firefighters, but there are specific actions you can take to lessen the risks to yourself and your crew. Firefighters will use this week to assure that all Personal Protection Equipment and Personal Protective Clothing is thoroughly cleaned and decontaminated including but not limited to, turnout trousers/coats, hoods, gloves, firefighting boots, SCBAs (air-packs), and apparatus cabs,” according to the release.

Firefighters will also train and educate all personnel on the risks of cancer and methods of prevention in the fire service.