Firetruck Accident Statistics

In 2020, an estimated 15,675 fire department vehicles were involved in traffic accidents which resulted in 550 firefighter injuries and 7 fatalities. Over the past decade, 10 road crash fatalities per year have occured on average. 5 Firetruck accidents are the second-leading cause of death for on-duty firefighters. 8

Firetruck collisions can occur while driving to an incident, parked at a roadside accident, or returning from an incident. At the scene of roadside accidents, firetrucks typically block highway lanes to increase safety for first responders.

Secondary collisions often cause significant apparatus damage and lengthy time out-of-service for repairs. Data is sparse for firetruck collisions at roadside incidents, however, a rough estimate can be made from police reports where a firetruck was parked & involved in a crash. In 2019, an estimated 16% or 2,500 firetruck collisions occured while parked or stationary. 6

Firetrucks involved in secondary crashes may require lengthy time out-of-service & costly repairs. The cost of all emergency vehicle crashes (including fire, police, and ambulance) in the U.S. is estimated to be as much as $35 billion annually. 7

NFPA Estimated Firetruck Collisions & Injuries 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 9

"Emergency responders are trained to be extremely careful and vigilant in transport and when responding to roadside incidents... Despite these precautions, however, the rate of these collisions in recent decades has remained relatively unchanged, with fatal consequences."