Yes all the companies you mentioned are being used by the forest service and the Vlats are under contract with cal fire but the state wil not use privite fire companies even if it is on such a draw down with state and local government that orders can’t be filled and as a tax payer I have a hard time with this
Email, call, snail mail your local politicians and demand an answer. Wish you the best of luck.
On the state side it is also a union issue. If you a short firefighters, then hire more, if only for the summer months.
So you wouldn’t have an issue with your local government contracting with Rural Metro to provide the staffing whenever a future employee is needed? I’m sure they are as fully trained as your local governments fire department is and have as dedicated employees as your does.
I’m sorry for your families loss, but you as a firefighter should be able to explain to them that even if there were 2000 engines at the Carr IC disposal, nothing was going to stop the fire from doing what it was going to do. When the weather starts up like it did, the only thing that will stop it is the weather subsiding. With all due respect to your 20 years and without knowing their exact specifics, I think you do a disservice to them to let them think UTF’s were a cause of their loss.
Not trying to say it was do to the UTF that my family lost there home, all I’m saying is in time of great need why not use any and all available resources at you disposal, I know this is a touchy subject with a lot of people but what is the difference between a private company personal who has gone through the same training or a volunteer or even a small paid district, the state is willing to hire private dozers in time of needs so if I am hearing you all right than the state should hire more dozer operators because I wouldn’t feel safe if John’s Dozer Service is cutting the fire line near my house VS a state dozer, sorry but use every tool you can when that tool box starts getting low. I’m not saying IA or anything like that and yes go through your state and local government resources first, but once you have exhausted those lists why not go to private,
There have been several state incidents over the last few years where private resources have been used. Firestorm, Grayback, and Evergreen crews have been on many of the fires I have worked. Soberanes, Thomas, and Carr to name a few…
Question where they there on state order or through forest service, I know on the Soberanes I work the same line as Firestorm but we were under forest service with the type 6s, on the Carr fire yes there were some privite engines yet again through Forest Service contract and in some cases had problem getting into there work area because of being private.
Maybe I’m barking up the wrong tree here and if so I’ll let this topic die again but like to just see the state start using all the tool at their disposal vs this your privite Fire and you don’t belong
Someone said it earlier… but I still think it’s a union thing. They argue the safety point and response time which is valid but there legislation isn’t aimed at mitigating that. Just out of curiosity which agencies have unions and who doesn’t want private contractors threatening that. Private contractor utilization threatens there position. We’re cheaper every way you look at it. I don’t want privates staffing stations. But I do think the common sense approach would be use private we’re you can.
One of the other issues is training which is brought up here many times… But PPE and Equipment readiness… How to manage that especially in a System like California where it would be overrun with Private companies trying to get the contracts and into the system. The state doesn’t want to finds itself liable after an oops by a private contractor…
Understand the union thing having been part of one for years, but if unions are holding private resources out of the mix than why aren’t they not throwing a stink when it come to small agencies and volunteers that aren’t union, and if it is a safety issue the privates should have to do the Cal Fire privite hire class every year just like dozer and water tender operators have to attend, I know the forest service requires that private fire present there qualifications every year before Fire season starts, I know it’s more paperwork for someone in an office at the Cal Fire office or OES office but if it can get more boots on the ground when resources are tapped out think it’s worth it, playing the what if game, if there was another large fire last month would there have been enough resources for it, when the Mendocino Complex kicked off it went days with UTF on orders because of the Carr and Ferguson, I also understand the response time that it would take some of the private hires to get units onto some of the fires but think there are way that this can be mitigated
I’m a private Dozer. Training is a big issue. Since logging has basically stopped there isn’t hardly any qualified operators. Also a private can’t just sit and wait for a fire so our response time is erratic. We are a awesome daytime support tool. That’s the way the feds use us. Cal fire wants to fight fire at night which is viable a lot of times. Privates don’t generally have the training or the rest prior to the fire to do that safely. We have “day jobs”.
The eight hour safety course has its place but it is not a real training course. Why do you think most privates can’t even work there radio. It’s not real training, it’s a technicality to get to the fire. I have heard grumblings about privates being put through training courses but who wants to be liable for training us. I think that is the big fear. Stamping a card that says joe private is trained by… fill in the blank.
I can be talking out of place on the union deal. I have no first hand knowledge. But I don’t think volunteers and small agencies are as big a threat as private contractors. Just a guess
Ive seen quite a few state fires with multiple private companies working engines/crews etc…