The fire service is responsible for having many different skills to serve the local community. Wildland fire suppression is one of those skill sets required by Fairmount Fire due to the vegetation and urban interface environments along the Front Range of Colorado.
In 2000, and especially, in 2002, Colorado was faced with devastating wildland fires that required assistance from numerous federal, state, and local fire suppression entities. This was also a time that Federal wildland suppression budgets were being reduced and many experienced Federal firefighters were retiring. It became apparent that local fire departments, or Cooperators, would be the entity to fill that need.
Fairmount embraced the opportunity to fill that need.
Fairmount Fire began to standardize qualifications, training, and equipment from a dedicated group of volunteers. We then hired personnel with specialized wildland skills to develop and grow the program. We began deploying to incidents across the country with our paid and volunteer firefighters. We developed a supplemental program to hire wildland trained individuals (Supplemental Responders) to deploy and provide a strong networking of experienced personnel. Lastly, we partnered with the Colorado Wildfire Incident Management Academy (CWIMA) to help teach, support, and provide learning opportunities for our personnel.
Fairmount Fire currently operates three Type 6 brush trucks (300 gallon tank, pickup size) and one Type 3 urban-interface engine (500 gallon tank, International chassis) for wildland fire. We also can respond with our Type 2 – 3000 gallon tender to incidents when water access and availability is limited.
Our line personnel, approximately 115 firefighters (paid, volunteer, and supplemental) are trained to the nationally accepted standards. We also have personnel that have advanced to overhead positions providing leadership on incidents.
The result has been better trained personnel, better relationships with our partners, better equipment, and a means to pay down expenses for the taxpayers of the District. In turn, the success of our program has allowed us to provide a better service to our Community!
Fairmount Incident Response Team
The Fairmount Incident ResponsE (FIRE) Team responds to Federal, State, County, and Local wildfire and all-hazard incidents. It is comprised of single resources, that are Fairmount Fire Protection District employees residing in all areas of the nation. FIRE Team members operate in many different capacities to provide assistance. Some of those skills provided include: Radio communications, GIS and mapping, finance tracking, logistical and/or resource acquisition, public relations, and incident planning and command. All FIRE Team members are qualified under the requirements of the National Wildfire Coordinating Group (NWCG) to ensure quality assistance and conformity with the many entities involved.
The goal of the FIRE Team is to provide professional, timely responses to incidents all over the country. The FIRE Team also serves the District directly by teaching and mentoring within their expertise, public relations, and providing technical advice to assist with program development.
In the past two years (2013 and 2014), the FIRE Team has logged over 20,000 hours on incidents providing their services. As the need for skilled resources of all-hazard incidents increases, the Fairmount Fire Protection District will continue a proactive approach in providing those specific resources and services to benefit all those involved.
Wildfire & Incident Management Training Academies
Fairmount Fire is one of the host agencies for the Colorado Wildland Fire and Incident Management Academy. Held in January and June, Members participate in Incident Command, Teaching, Logistical support, and as students. Participating in these academies offers members a unique opportunity to learn and build life long relationships with people from all over world. Personnel also support the Arizona and New York Wildfire and Incident Management Academies held in March and October.