August 20–On Thursday, August 20th the Washington State Emergency Operations Center (EOC) requested four firefighters from the Seattle Fire Department’s Critical Stress Incident Management team to provide support in Okanogan. The firefighters will assist Forest Service crews in dealing with the loss of three firefighters and the injury of four others.
“The deaths and injuries of these firefighters is a tragic loss to the entire fire family. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and crew members of those injured and lost,” says Fire Chief Harold Scoggins. “These firefighters were injured and killed working the front fire lines in order to valiantly protect the property and lives of the residents of Central and Eastern Washington.”
This latest deployment brings the total of 20 Seattle Firefighters currently dispatched in Central and Eastern Washington to assist in firefighting operations. 16 of the firefighters have received wildland fire training and have their Incident Qualification Card or “red cards.”
Seattle Fire has assisted the State with multiple requests for firefighting resources as follows:
August 14, Seattle fire was part of a Type 1 Engine Strike team to the Reach Complex Fire in Chelan to provide structure protection. The crew has worked on the First Creek Fire on the South Shore of Lake Chelan State Park. Fire crews protected structures and also assisted in back fire operations to slow the spread of the main fire. The crews were also sent to Pateros and Alta Lake to assist in these fires.
August 15, One Fire Officer was deployed with Incident Management Team 1 as a Communication Section leader at the Kettle Complex Fire in Curlew. He was assisted by two more Seattle Firefighters as Radio Operators. A line Paramedic was also provided by Seattle fire to this incident.
August 18, four Seattle Firefighters were dispatched to Fruitland in a Type 6 engine which is a 4×4 pickup truck with a water tank and pump. This crew will be working in the wild land to cut fire lines and extinguish the fire.
August 19, four Seattle Firefighters deployed this morning as part of a King County Strike team made up of five engines from Seattle, Bellevue, Kent, Valley Regional, and Eastside Fire Departments to head to Conconully, Washington to assist in structure protection in the small Eastern Washington Town.