New Alabama law helps firefighters diagnosed with cancer

Chief Saferite is coming up on his 30th year as a firefighter, but 4 years ago, he tells WAAY31 he was diagnosed with skin cancer on his face and neck.

Posted: Jun 20, 2019 7:17 PM

Help is on the way for career firefighters in Alabama who have been diagnosed with cancer. A recently-signed law gives firefighters money for extra insurance coverage as they battle the disease. Fort Payne Fire Chief, Ron Saferite knows the dangers first-hand.

"I've had a little bit of a scare with cancer like alot of the firefighters are getting now. Mine was skin cancer," Chief Saferite said.

Chief Saferite is coming up on his 30th year as a firefighter, but 4 years ago, he tells WAAY31 he was diagnosed with skin cancer on his face and neck.

This session, the state passed a bill to help provide extra insurance coverage for firefighters like Chief Saferite.

"They get a lump-sum payment up front, and thats to cover first off, expenses, traveling, copays, that type of stuff," Chief Saferite said.

The maximum amount of money given from a local government to a patient would be $50,000. A firefighter could also receive $3,000 per month for up to 36 months. The bill lists more than 20 types of cancers, as firefighters can be diagnosed because of many different things.

Firefighters are not only exposed to carcinogens through the air that they breathe in. If they don't clean their gear properly. The toxic fumes could get into their skin.

The Fort Payne City Council recently approved new gear for the fire department. It would minimize the amount of toxic air exposed to the firefighter's skin.

According to the bill, the addition of cancer to the insurance policy, will cost local governments an extra $200 a year, per firefighter.

Chief Saferite says it's a long time coming, and thinks every dollar is worth protecting first responders.

"They're finally realizing our guys are going to get covered for stuff that they've done for everybody else in the past and future. Its paying them back for what they do," Chief Saferite said.

Huntsville
Broken Clouds
62° wxIcon
Hi: 82° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 62°
Florence
Few Clouds
61° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 61°
Fayetteville
Few Clouds
57° wxIcon
Hi: 82° Lo: 60°
Feels Like: 57°
Decatur
Broken Clouds
61° wxIcon
Hi: 82° Lo: 61°
Feels Like: 61°
Scottsboro
Few Clouds
57° wxIcon
Hi: 82° Lo: 60°
Feels Like: 57°
WAAY Radar
WAAY WAAY-TV Cam
WAAY Temperatures

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 153016

Reported Deaths: 2633
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson22563372
Mobile14335314
Tuscaloosa10023133
Montgomery9759196
Madison904893
Shelby709960
Lee644966
Baldwin640569
Marshall428248
Calhoun412759
Etowah405749
Morgan396833
Houston364632
DeKalb319628
Elmore310752
St. Clair282142
Limestone270828
Walker268892
Talladega258435
Cullman227623
Lauderdale208740
Autauga201029
Jackson200915
Franklin199731
Colbert192228
Russell19053
Dallas185627
Blount184824
Chilton181731
Escambia171328
Coffee16669
Covington166029
Dale163451
Pike130512
Chambers130143
Tallapoosa128686
Clarke127117
Marion104729
Butler99840
Barbour9889
Marengo97221
Winston90413
Geneva8417
Pickens80517
Lawrence80031
Randolph79814
Bibb79114
Hale74529
Cherokee72214
Clay71912
Lowndes70127
Henry6376
Bullock63517
Monroe6319
Washington62212
Crenshaw59330
Perry5806
Wilcox55912
Conecuh55713
Fayette55312
Cleburne5287
Macon52820
Sumter46721
Lamar4565
Choctaw38712
Greene33916
Coosa1973
Out of AL00
Unassigned00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 233569

Reported Deaths: 2952
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Shelby34523553
Davidson29914326
Knox1193687
Hamilton11197103
Rutherford11090106
Williamson665649
Sumner5664107
Wilson443153
Putnam415653
Montgomery387251
Out of TN377535
Unassigned37264
Madison363079
Bradley343421
Sullivan324845
Sevier317321
Blount313932
Washington313244
Maury308135
Robertson249839
Hamblen233843
Tipton220622
Gibson205938
Dyer203726
Hardeman179532
Coffee177420
Trousdale17437
Obion164918
Bedford159620
Dickson157318
Fayette157022
Anderson156713
Greene156551
Wayne15657
Loudon155010
McMinn152232
Cumberland150124
Lawrence147918
Jefferson146619
Weakley144425
Carter142832
Monroe137027
Henderson136125
Warren135110
Hardin132219
Lauderdale131918
Macon126324
Franklin122816
Roane12017
Haywood119526
Overton113311
Johnson11067
Hawkins110524
White110214
Carroll109424
McNairy109126
Marshall10568
Rhea104916
Cheatham97311
Lake9703
Smith94713
Cocke92612
Bledsoe9244
Giles90134
Campbell8857
Fentress8618
Lincoln8142
Crockett78321
Henry74610
Hickman74413
Chester71314
Marion7089
DeKalb67716
Decatur62811
Grainger5394
Grundy5248
Claiborne5046
Union4992
Polk47413
Jackson4225
Humphreys4154
Morgan4116
Houston39215
Benton3919
Cannon3872
Clay37112
Unicoi3672
Lewis3522
Scott3324
Sequatchie3294
Stewart3117
Meigs2965
Pickett2495
Moore2452
Perry2081
Van Buren1911
Hancock1123

Community Events