Federal investigation of Mass. firefighter's death to begin
A federal investigation into the line-of-duty death of Worcester Firefighter Christopher Roy is slated to begin in the new year, officials said
By Melissa Hanson
WORCESTER, Mass. — A federal investigation into the line-of-duty death of Worcester Firefighter Christopher Roy is slated to begin in the new year, officials said.
Roy, a 36-year-old who had been with the Worcester Fire Department for 2 and a half years, died Dec. 9 after becoming trapped on the second floor of 7 Lowell St. while firefighters battled a five-alarm blaze.
A spokeswoman for the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health confirmed that the agency would begin investigating the incident in January, starting with an initial examination.
The agency cannot comment on specific factors of the investigation, said Nura Sadeghpour, the agency spokeswoman.
Worcester Fire Department spokesman Deputy Chief Martin Dyer said the investigation would include testing of Roy’s fire gear, as is customary with line-of-duty death investigations.
Fire Fighter Fatality Investigation and Prevention Program reports by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health are intended to help provide information to prevent future fatalities, Sadeghpour wrote in an email.
“It is important to emphasize that the NIOSH program is intended to identify factors that contributed to fire fighter deaths in an incident, as well as to provide findings and recommendations in public reports to prevent future tragedies,” the email read. “NIOSH does not enforce compliance with regulations or assess culpability.”
It is unclear how long it will take the agency to complete the investigation and publish a report.
Dyer said that the cause of the fire remains under investigation. He could not say whether or not the blaze appears to be suspicious.
Roy was a Shrewsbury resident and leaves his 9-year-old daughter, his parents and a brother.
A memorial fund has been established in the name of Roy’s daughter, Ava.
Donations to the fund can be made online or by check.
Anyone who wishes to contribute can make checks payable to the “AVA ROY FUND” and can mail them directly to the Worcester Fire Department Credit Union at 34 Glennie St., Worcester, Mass., 01605.
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