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Firefighter Accident & Injury Claims

Staff within Ireland’s fire service place their lives in danger every time they respond to an emergency call. If you have chosen to become a firefighter, you undoubtedly are aware of the risks that are involved in carrying out your duties. However, just like any other profession, your employer has a duty of care to ensure you are protected against accidents and injuries that are entirely avoidable. If you feel you have suffered an avoidable injury in the course of your duties, it may be possible to instigate a firefighter injury claim against your employer. An experienced firefighter injury lawyer will be able to help you determine if you have a case.


Helpful Information

Fire brigades in Ireland respond to many different types of dangerous scenarios including house fires, industrial accident scenes, chemical and hazardous spills, building inspections, and road accidents. It’s possible to sustain entirely avoidable injuries, whilst on route to emergency incidents, or even at the scene of the accident that you have attended. If you think this applies to you, you may be able to instigate a claim for compensation.

Bringing a claim for negligence

Employees of fire brigade services are the same as many other emergency service workers, such as paramedics and Gardaí, in that they place their lives on the line to help keep others safe. Those who become firefighters understand that there is a multitude of unpredictable scenarios where it is impossible for an employer to safeguard their staff from harm’s way. For example, the possibility of colliding with an irresponsible car driver, on route to an accident, is something that employers can do little to mitigate beyond adequate levels of advanced driver training.

However, just because emergency service staff deal with dangerous scenarios as part of their daily duties, this does not mean that firefighters do not have the same rights as everyone else to a work environment that protects their safety to a high standard. Should a firefighter be injured due to an incident that could have been prevented, it’s possible that a claim for negligence could be instigated.
Scenarios, where you may have a basis to instigate a firefighter accident claim, include:

  • An injury sustained in a road traffic accident caused by negligent driving (either on the part of the person driving the response vehicle or by a third party)
  • An injury sustained at the scene of the accident caused by a malicious actor (for example, a person under the influence of drink or drugs or a person engaged in criminal activity)
  • An injury sustained during unsafe training exercises
  • An injury sustained due to faulty equipment or equipment that had not been inspected or checked properly
  • Failure by your employer to recognise symptoms of PTSD resulting from an extreme experience on the job
  • Failure to properly deal with harassment or bullying claims.

There are likely to be many other types of scenarios where you can legitimately bring a claim for negligence. Speak to one of our specialist solicitors today for further advice.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Some of the questions we are often asked in relation to this topic.

  • Which laws mandate firefighter safety?

    The Fire Services Act 1981 and 2003 mandates fire authorities to ensure the safety, health, and welfare of firefighters. It requires the establishment of adequate fire services, proper training, and the provision of necessary equipment. The acts emphasise the importance of risk assessment, safety management, and the implementation of protective measures to safeguard firefighters during operations. Fire authorities must also adhere to national and European safety standards to maintain high levels of protection for their personnel.

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  • Who is liable to pay injury compensation in the event this act is not adhered to?

    In a firefighter is injured as a result of non-compliance with the Act, the liability for paying injury compensation typically falls on the employer, which in this case is the local government responsible for the fire service. If it is found that the fire authority failed to comply with safety regulations or did not provide adequate training, equipment, or working conditions, they can be held liable for compensation claims made by the injured firefighter.

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  • Do I need a solicitor?

    While you are not legally required to have a solicitor to bring a claim for injury compensation, it is highly advisable. A solicitor specialising in personal injury law can help navigate the complexities of the legal process, gather necessary evidence, and advocate on your behalf to ensure you receive fair compensation. They can also provide valuable advice on the merits of your case and potential outcomes. Engaging a solicitor increases the likelihood of a successful claim and ensures that your rights are fully protected throughout the process.

Bringing your firefighter injury claim

If you are a firefighter and you have suffered an avoidable injury whilst on duty, get in touch with our specialist firefighter injury lawyers today to make a start on your claim or gather more information. Call us on 1800 390 555 and an experienced member of staff will discuss your situation and potential next steps. You can also email on and we will get back to you as soon as we can.

McCarthy + Co Personal Injury Team CTA

About McCarthy + Co

With more than 30 years of experience in dealing with personal injury claims, McCarthy + Co. has expertise in a wide variety of fields including emergency services related accidents. We are a family-run business, and we pride ourselves on offering honest, impartial, and helpful advice.

Our offices are based in Dublin and Cork but we work with clients throughout Ireland in locations ranging from Galway to Waterford. You can count on us for legal advice, guidance, and assistance on any form of personal injury.

Useful Resources

Some links relating to fire safety that you may find useful.

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Our Partners

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Flor McCarthy

Flor McCarthy

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Twitter: @flormccarthy LinkedIn: /in/flormccarthy/

wears multiple hats, not only as the managing partner of one of Ireland’s leading law firms, but also as an author, speaker and an acknowledged expert in client service, innovation and marketing.

Beginning his academic journey at UCC, Flor furthered his education with a master’s degree in law from UCD. After gaining valuable experience as a solicitor in Dublin, the allure of home and the family brought him back to West Cork to contribute his expertise to the family business.
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John McCarthy

John McCarthy

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is a seasoned solicitor with almost 20 years of experience, specialises in personal injury and medical negligence claims, focusing particularly on high-value compensation cases. His extensive litigation experience spans Circuit Court, High Court and Supreme Court levels.

John's practice involves a diverse range of cases, from personal injury and wrongful death to property damage, defective products, professional negligence and judicial reviews.
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