Fire dept. talks mental health after firefighter murder, suicide shooting
Capt. Frederick Bair fired multiple rounds, killing one man and wounding his ex-wife before turning the gun on himself
By FireRescue1 Staff
TUCSON, Ariz. — After a fire captain opened fire at a restaurant last week, killing himself and another man, his former fire department released a statement regarding the mental health of firefighters.
KGUN9.com reported that the Tucson Fire Department took time to answer questions about the mental health challenges in the fire service.
"The department has held off on public comment out of respect for the victims and their families," the statement read. "The issue of mental health and depression is a societal problem. The men and women of the fire service are part of that society."
The statement continued to touch on the fact that firefighters are exposed to conditions most "average" people are not. However, the department said that reasoning is "by no means an excuse for the unthinkable actions that led to this terrible loss of life."
The department, in partnership with the Tucson Firefighter's Association, has put together a comprehensive program addressing firefighter health and wellness. The department also listed myriad of resources available to firefighters in regard to mental health issues.
"We will continue to seek opportunities to intervene with employees as early as possible during their time of need," the statement said.