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Cancer is the number one killer among fire fighters. Despite the risky nature of their job that involves running into burning buildings, they are at a higher risk of dying of cancer than of work related accidents. Their exposure to smoke or fire is not the cause of the high rate of cancer but the toxins that escape during the fire (Rena J. 2017). These respected members of our society should be protected from this deadly disease. In his article Station Design in August 2014, Paul Erickson suggests that these high cancer rates can be reduced by adopting the HOT Zone Design of the fire station.

The author’s intended audience is his fellow architects, fire department chiefs as well as the local authorities. The fire department heads should advocate for highly functioning fire stations for the sake of the whole department. The architects’ role is to design efficient fire and rescue stations such as the one illustrated in the article and even improve it further. The article has convinces the local authorities on the importance of such station so that they can fund the improvement projects.

The author’s main point is that the adoption of well-designed, highly functional and efficient fire stations would reduce fire fighters’ contact with cancer causing agents. Fire fighters are exposed to carcinogens in the field and carry them back to the station. At the station, no personal protective equipment is not used thus the fire fighters are under constant exposure to the cancer causing agents. He suggests the various personnel friendly designs that can be adopted. He further illustrates how each design would be applied in order to work effectively. Structural changes would not be effective if absolute caution was not applied. This involves proper storage of equipment as well as thorough decontamination of fire fighters after returning from the field. Buy cheap online essay help now.

The author’s argument supports his main point. His various illustrations have shown how fire fighters contact with cancer-causing agents can be reduced. Illustrations 1 and 2 involve proper organization of the fire station. This would reduce contact between the different users of the station: administrators, janitors and the fire fighters thus minimizing the number of people exposed to carcinogens. Thus the number of people at risk of getting cancer drastically falls. In illustrations 3 and 4, he shows how carcinogens should be handled. Once properly handled, the fire fighters exposure to them is reduced greatly and thus their chances of getting cancer fall. The idea of having decontaminants within the station is brilliant because even if a fire fighter was exposed to carcinogens in the field they can decontaminate.

The author has clearly shown how fire fighters are at a high risk of getting cancer because of their line of work. His use of percentage digits to show their levels of exposure to different cancers really captures the reader attention. His expertise in the field of architecture has come in handy in providing a solution for the problem. The use of diagrams helps readers of all professions not just the architects to understand the article. His work on this article is basically well handled and properly delivered.

There are however some issues that were overlooked in the article. The suggested designs in the illustration diagrams are only applicable in developed countries like the United States of America and Britain. The cost of putting up such a fire station would be too high for a developing. Some of these countries depend on volunteer fire fighters because they cannot afford to hire professionals (Rose v. 2014). The author should have therefore considered designing a fire station that is cost friendly. The designs in illustrations 3 and 4 are too complex and burdensome to work in. An efficient fire station design should be simple to build and maintain as well as pleasant to work in or visit (Department for Communities and Local Government: London. 2007).

I agree with the author’s findings that the HOT Zone Design offers the possibility to dramatically reduce the incidence of cancer within the firefighting community. This is because the design involves containing the contaminants. The separation of occupants from contaminates as illustrated would ensure that fire fighters are at minimum exposure to cancer causing agents. This protects the fire fighters from contracting the deadly disease.


Department for Communities and Local Government, (2007). Achieving Design Quality in Fire and Rescue Service Buildings. Retrieved from images/1240923444

Reno, J. (2017) Why Cancer is the Number One Killer among Fire Fighters. Florida: Health Line

Rose, V. (2014) Cost Of Operating Different Types Of Fire Departments. Hartford: Office of Legislative Research

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