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Incident Name:
Date: 3/3/2004, 0912 hrs
Personnel: Eddie Peters
Age: 40
Agency/Organization: Florida Division of Forestry, Tallahassee, Florida
Position: forest ranger, firefighter

Summary: Forest Ranger Peters was driving to a controlled burn from his work station in a Division of Forestry Brush Patrol Truck. The vehicle was a 1986 Chevrolet pickup truck chassis fitted with a small water tank and pump at the back of the truck.As he drove on a state road, Forest Ranger Peters' vehicle experienced a blowout or tire separation on the right front tire. The vehicle traveled off of the right-hand side of the road, hit a culvert, and flipped upside down. Forest Ranger Peters was trapped underwater inside the vehicle and drowned. The depth of the water was approximately 2 feet; Forest Ranger Peters was wearing his seat belt.Other drivers who either witnessed or came upon the crash scene removed Forest Ranger Peters from the vehicle. It was estimated that he had been submerged for approximately 10 minutes. EMS responders pronounced Peters dead at the scene.

 

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Maps

Florida Division of Forestry, 3125 Conner Blvd, Tallahassee , Florida 32399-1650

 

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Reports, Documentation, Lessons Learned

    • USFA Memorial Database: Edward Orlando 'Eddie' Peters
    • NIOSH Report: Forest Ranger/Fire Fighter Drowned After Catastrophic Blow-out of Right Front Tire - Florida
    • NIOSH investigators concluded that to minimize the risk of similar occurrences, fire management agencies and fire departments should:
      • provide driver training as often as necessary to meet the requirements of NFPA 1451. Training should incorporate specifics on maintaining vehicle control when a rapid loss of tire pressure (blowout) occurs.
      • as part of the apparatus maintenance program, ascertain the age of tires and impose time restrictions for usage according to manufacturers’ specifications and guidelines
    • Although it is unclear if the following contributed to this incident, fire management agencies and fire departments should consider implementing the following recommendation based on prudent safety considerations.
      • ensure that vehicles meet the requirements of NFPA 1901 and NFPA 1906 and do not exceed their load-carrying capacity

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Media Articles and Reports

Florida Division Of Forestry Forest Ranger Died In A Single Vehicle Crash
LAWRENCE E. SCOVOTTO, CAE, Florida Fire Chiefs' Association | Firehouse.com archive

Florida Division of Forestry Forest Ranger Edward 'Eddie' Peters died on March 3 in a single vehicle crash on State Road 24 in Rosewood. Peters was 40 and single.

Peters was on his way to conduct a control burn when the brush patrol truck he was operating left the roadway, struck a culvert and flipped, trapping him under water. He was wearing his seatbelt.

He first worked as a fire tower lookout in the Cedar Key area starting in February, 1989. In August, 1991 Eddie became a wildland firefighter and stayed in the Levy County area. He was an avid sportsman and a highly admired wildland firefighter by his peers.

A visitation was held Saturday, March 6 from 6-8 p.m. at the Hiers-Baxley Funeral Home, 1301 North Young Blvd(Hwy 19), Chiefland, FL 32626.

There will be a brief grave side Service held today at 3 p.m. at the Cedar Key Cemetery, Cedar Key.

Fire and emergency service personnel desiring to take part in the procession to the Cedar Key Cemetery are asked to stage at the Robinson Seafood 'Fish House' just west of the DOF Cedar Key Fire Tower on State Road 24 no later then 1330 hours.

Questions on services may be addressed to Gene Madden, Florida Division of Forestry's Division Safety Officer.

 

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