Trooper Allan Peterson

Trooper Allan Peterson

Michigan State Police, Michigan

End of Watch Saturday, August 29, 1981

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Allan Peterson

Trooper Allan Peterson succumbed to internal injuries received after being exposed to fluorosulfonic acid fumes following the derailment of a Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad train in the business district of Bridgman, Michigan.

The train contained several tanker cars that left the tracks and became damaged during the derailment. A 12-square mile area around the derailment was evacuated, and Trooper Peterson was assigned to guard the inner perimeter of the crash site to keep citizens and reporters clear of the dangers.

The tanker that contained the fluorosulfonic acid was damaged to the point that a plume of white smoke leaked from it during the entire time Trooper Peterson was on duty at the scene. Approximately three weeks later Trooper Peterson's health deteriorated, and he suffered a fatal heart attack. It was later determined that medical complications from the toxins exposure caused the heart attack.

Trooper Peterson had served with the Michigan State Police for 13 years.


  • Age 34
  • Tour 13 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Exposure to toxins
  • Incident Date Friday, August 7, 1981

toxic fumes

Most Recent Reflection

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Trooper Peterson and Family,

As an instructor for Hazardous Materials courses around the country, I too reflect on your exposure with my students. The belief is that through your selfless sacrifice other responders will not have to make their final call. Your impact has definitely saved lives Sir.

You will never be forgotten!

(Ret.) Capt. Curt Thompson
Waterford Regional Fire Department

February 8, 2023

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