No New Information in New York Training Death

Private investigator reveals nothing new

Bill Carey
6 September 2021

WATERTOWN, New York – WWNY reports that six months after the death of Watertown firefighter Peyton Morse the Morse family has few details after hiring a private investigator.

Morse died on 12 March, nine days after being found unresponsive inside a SCBA confidence tunnel during training at the New York State Fire Academy in Montour Falls.

News of Morse’s death was quickly followed by reports of instructors being removed, departments pulling students out, and allegations of hazing. The family, fire chief, and local politicians asked the attorney general’s office to investigate the deaths.

Since then the New York State Police and the Public Employee Safety and Health Bureau (PESH) and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) have begun an investigation into what caused Morse’s death.

The WWNY story states that is has been six months and there are no answers from PESH and NIOSH. There is no context or comment regarding the amount of time it takes to complete such investigations however everyone in the fire service should be aware that a NIOSH report can take years until it is released.

The Morse family hired a private investigator who told them that, through interviews with witnesses, Peyton’s “low oxygen alarm” was going off and that he said he couldn’t breath “through his mask” while inside the plywood tunnel.

That information was first reported on 16 March and again on 19 March.

The family is concerned about a cover-up and have called upon the governor’s office for transparency and answers.

Governor Kathy Hochul’s office issued a generic comment in favor of transparency.

Related: Autopsy Results on New York Firefighter Stricken at State Fire Academy

Photo courtesy of the New York Stater Fire Academy, Facebook.

Published by Data Not Drama

Data Not Drama is writings that provide a point of critical thought about firefighter fatality data and education, line of duty deaths, and risk. The main focus is to encourage less risk aversion and better knowledge on the subject of firefighter fatalities in firefighters, fire departments, and fire service organizations.

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