With all the dangers associated with fighting fires, crashing the truck on the way to the emergency site is a leading cause of firefighter deaths.
Around one in five of the 829 firefighter fatalities in the last decade occurred on the way to or back from calls, the Washington Post reports, using data from the National Fire Protection Agency.
That makes crashes more deadly than most threats from fighting the fires themselves, such as building collapses or electrical shock. Overexertion or heart stress is the only more frequent cause of death, according to the NFPA.
“It’s a nationwide problem,” Vincent Brannigan, emeritus professor of fire protection engineering at the University of Maryland, told the Post. “You’ve got a patient in back of an ambulance, and the instinct to go like hell is enormous.”