No fires in February leads to slow month for Fire District

by Richard Uhlhorn

At last Wednesday’s Chelan Fire and Rescue commission meeting, Fire Chief Brandon Asher reported that outside of an uptick in overtime the department was in good shape.

Chelan Fire and Rescue Fire Chief Brandon Asher

The department received another $51,200 in State Mob. money for the 25-Mile Creek Fire and is expecting another $33,500 in outstanding State Mob. money.

Asher reported that there were no fires during the month of February, but they responded to 41 callouts including six that were Advanced Life Saving; 21 Basic Life Saving and 14 that ended up as No Ambulance Transfers. “We had no significant responses,” said Asher.

Asher reported that the District hadn’t received approval for an extension of SAFER Grant to utilize funding not spent in 2021. The department did receive a 50% DNR equipment grant with a cap of $3,000.

A $250,000 grant has been approved to “start up a Hazmat team in the region. “It’s a pretty amazing grant and a good thing for the area,” stated Asher.

Volunteer recruitment:

The department had no dropouts in its firefighter classes. Asher reported that Adam Jones, Entiat’s new fire chief, is putting together a plan for wildland fire season.

Asher also attended the National Fire Chief’s convention last month and reported that it was, not only an awesome experience, but that he was able to network with fire chiefs from around the Nation. “I’m receiving all kinds of email from chiefs asking how we do things and what they can do to help,” said Asher.

The Roof at Fire Station 71:

With bids from $140,000 to $190,000 to replace the roof at FS-71, Asher reported that the more they talked about it, it is not the time to do a replacement. Any leaks will be addressed individually saving the District a lot of money.

Assistant Chief search:

Asher reported that the District was excited and will be interviewing three top applicants. “We are looking forward to having help on board,” said Asher.

Seasonal Firefighters:

The District had four applications for the seasonal firefighter slots and will hire three who will begin on May 1. “They will work a 36 hour shift with 12 hours off.” Asked if the department was paying for their housing, Asher replied that they will bunk down at the Fire Hall.

The seasonal firefighters will be on board at the Fire Station by May 1 in time for the upcoming wildland fire season.

City of Chelan v Fire Department Agreement:

Asher reported that the department has entered into a one-year agreement with the City to provide fire services at a no-cost monetarily to either party.

Author: allthingslakechelan

I have been a journalist, photojournalist and reporter in the Lake Chelan Valley since 1988; first with the Wenatchee World, then 15 years at the Lake Chelan Mirror and another 12 years at GoLakeChelan. Currently, I am semi-retired but can't give up the media gig which is why I started All Things Lake Chelan blog. I also have two social media platforms; allthingslakechelan/facebook and lakechelansportsandrecration/facebook. I am also a professional photographer with many credits with major outlets around the world.

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