Napa was on fire. A winery’s private crew was accused of wrongdoing. The case...

Not sure if this particular incident was discussed here, interesting article in SF Chronicle about a private fire fighting firm working for landowners or insurance companies maybe having put fire on the ground.

Unfortunately its behind a pay wall

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This underscores the burgeoning hazards of private for hire resources used for fire suppression. This particular incident involved multiple private engines who were overlapping each other attempting to do a burning operation that was not communicated or coordinated. The result was a chaotic scene where there were verbal disagreements between the private engines while an incident assigned resource was protecting the structure. There were several incidents on that particular fire where private resources were suspected of initiating firing operations, one of which may have damaged a structure.
I have seen multiple negative incidents involving private resources on fires, including criminal behavior… stealing, soliciting a minor and drug and alcohol use.
While I would not deny that uniformed fire personnel are not immune to poor behavior, there is a standard and positive chain of command in place to deal with those incidents.
There is a place for private contract fire engines, but it is not on the direct fireline and not in California…


Sorry about that: it opens fine for me and I’m not a subscriber

Perhaps I am making a bigger deal of this than is necessary, but the article states that it was a “investigator” who made the call to pull all private personnel off. In actuality, it was the Safety Officer who made the call that went out over the Command freq. with acknowledgement.

For those who are interested, we did discuss this matter during the Incident, in a separate discussion found here: Assumption of Risk


Not entirely,…
Operations overheard the traffic from the STL and stopped the operation. All private engines were removed to a parking lot… those that were involved were detained, the remainder were told to leave the incident and report to the ICP. All LE was advised to not allow any private non-uniformed or marked vehicles through the TCP’s.

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