Fire service instructors' working practices: A UK survey

Emily R Watkins, Mark Hayes, Peter Watt, Alan J Richardson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Analysis of Fire Service Instructors (FSI) working practices and health is needed to minimise health risks related to heat illness, cardiovascular events and immunological stress. Online surveys were distributed to UK FSI and Firefighters (FF). One hundred and thirty FSI (age: 43 ± 7yrs) and 232 FF (age: 41 ± 8yrs) responded. FSI experienced 2-10 live fires per week, with 45% of FSI reporting management does not set a limit on the number of exposures. Few FSI followed hydration guidelines, or cooling methods. New symptoms of ill health were reported by 41% of FSI and 21% of FF. FSI with ≥11 Breathing Apparatus exposures per month were 4.5 times (95% CI 1.33-15.09) more likely to experience new symptoms. A large proportion of FSI are experiencing new symptoms of illness after starting their career, and guidelines on exposure and hydration are not universally in place to reduce the risk of future health problems.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)322-330
Number of pages9
JournalArchives of environmental & occupational health
Issue number6
Early online date4 May 2018
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • Journal Article

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