Firefighter cancer nonprofit to receive proceeds from new PPE hood cleaning service

Burbank, California – The Firefighter Cancer Support Network (FCSN) announced today it has been selected by Minerva Bunker Gear Cleaners to receive five percent of the proceeds from Minerva’s new Project Clean Hoods service. Minerva launches Project Clean Hoods this week in conjunction with FDIC International in Indianapolis.

Cancer is the leading cause of firefighter line-of-duty deaths in the United States. FCSN urges firefighters to clean their personal protective equipment (PPE), including their fire-protective hoods, regularly to reduce their occupational exposure to carcinogens.

“Firefighters get cancer at a rate three times higher than the rest of the population,” said Joe Xiras, owner of Minerva. “Hoods provide protection during fireground operations, but they soak up smoke and soot that are full of carcinogens. Project Clean Hoods is a new monthly service to deliver clean and sanitized hoods to help firefighters reduce their risk of cancer. We’re asking firefighters to ‘use your head – clean your hood.’”

FCSN was founded in 2005 by L.A. County Firefighter/Paramedic Michael Dubron, a survivor of stage IV colon cancer.

Today, FCSN’s objective is to provide timely assistance to all fire and EMS personnel and their family members who have been diagnosed with cancer. FCSN offers unique expertise through its national network of peer-support mentors. FCSN also delivers firefighter cancer awareness and prevention programs nationwide.

“This gracious, ongoing support from Minerva’s Project Clean Hoods will help FCSN continue to expand our national firefighter cancer support, awareness and prevention programs,” said FCSN President Bryan Frieders, a division chief with the San Gabriel (Calif.) Fire Department. “The flash hood is one of the most important pieces of PPE we have, yet we often neglect it. The contaminants soaked into the flash hood continue to be absorbed into our skin. Insisting on clean hoods is one way we’re going to reduce the risk of many occupational cancers.”
Cancer is a looming personal catastrophe for every firefighter. Multiple studies, including a joint U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) and National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) cancer study released in 2013, have repeatedly illustrated higher rates of multiple types of cancers in firefighters compared to the general American population.

FCSN’s 2013 white paper, “Taking Action Against Cancer in the Fire Service,” provides lifesaving details about recognizing and reducing firefighters’ cancer risks. It’s available as a free download from

About FCSN

Cancer has become the most dangerous threat to the health and safety of America’s
firefighters. The Firefighter Cancer Support Network provides timely assistance and oneon-one peer support to fire/EMS members and their families after a cancer diagnosis.
FCSN, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, also educates the fire/EMS community about cancer awareness and prevention. For more details, please visit FDIC booth 10084 and

About Minerva Bunker Gear Cleaners

Minerva Bunker Gear Cleaners, with locations in New York, Charlotte, North Carolina, and Miami, Florida, services bunker gear from FDNY and hundreds of other departments nationwide. Minerva is third-party verified and fully NFPA 1851 compliant. For more information about Minerva Bunker Gear Cleaners, please visit FDIC booths 13125 and 506 and

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