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Rescue workers and trauma: Assessing interaction among risk factors after a firework factory explosio

Eugenia Romano, MS, Ask Elklit, MSc


Introduction: This study investigates which factors had the biggest impact on developing distress in rescue workers who were involved in a firework factory explosion.

Method: Four hundred sixty-five rescuers were assessed using items investigating demographic factors, organizational variables, social support, personality variables, and distress symptoms. Correlation and regression analyses were performed.

Results: Our final model provided 70 percent of the predictive model for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) severity. Waiting time, lack of rest, problems at work, and perceived level of danger seemed to have the highest impact on protective factors.

Discussion: In addition to perceived life danger and personality, small organizational factors seem to play an important role in the prediction of PTSD. The importance of such factors needs further investigation in future research, contributing to a better organization in the field of disaster management.


post-traumatic stress disorder, trauma, explosion, predictors, risk factors, demographics, organizational variables, social support, personality, distress symptoms

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