Fire Station 3 is located on Airport Heights and houses Engine 3, Truck 3, and Medic 3. The crews at Station 3 are highly trained in Urban Search and Rescue and base their training on such natural disasters as earthquakes and confined space rescues.
There will be a full bio provided soon.
Saturday, February 20, 2010
When you live in a community that’s adopted “Big Wild Life” as its slogan, you expect that people who live in it are going to have an attraction to the outdoors. Some people joke that part of Anchorage’s draw is that it’s close to the “Real Alaska,” but how many cities can boast that their residents can canoe, kayak, and raft in rivers and lakes, scale cliffs, climb mountains, and even kite-surf all within their city limits? And one of the best things about playing in our wild backyard was that the Anchorage Fire Department was available to help out, if our residents had an unfortunate accident. Unfortunately, this may not be the case in the not too distant future…
In an effort to save $150,000 the City has decided to eliminate certain aspects of some special rescue teams that were part of the Anchorage Fire Department. As part of this, there will no longer be a Backcountry Rescue Team to serve Flattop, Hillside trails, McHugh Creek, and Turnagain Arm trails. The Water Rescue Team has been downsized, and will no longer respond to distress calls in Cook Inlet, and depending on staffing, may not respond to calls during the winter months. There is no longer a Swift Water Rescue Team to service Eagle River or any other area rivers and streams. The staffing of the Hazardous Materials Response Team has been decreased, which will decrease response capabilities to incidents within the City, including the Anchorage Port, the Alaska Railroad, or Ted Stevens International Airport.
While the incidents that these teams respond to make up a small percentage of the Anchorage Fire Department’s total call volume, their specialized nature requires full staffing, proper equipment, and fully trained members. Without these specialized teams, both victims and first responders lives are placed at a higher risk.
Here are some recent stories about AFD’s special teams:
Do you see these teams everyday, no, but when they are called upon their rescue services save lives and are needed more than ever:
AFD’s Dive Rescue Team – Numbers Decreased
KTUU Dive Team (Ice) Story – These responder numbers will be decreased
KTUU Dive Team Story – These responder numbers will be decreased
KTUU Inlet Rescue Story – This service will be eliminated
AFD’s Backcountry Rescue Team – Eliminated
KTUU Flattop Story
ADN.com Flattop Story
ADN.com Flattop Story
The 300,000 people who live, work, play, and travel through Anchorage on a daily basis deserve to have a Fire Department capable of providing adequate first response capabilities to all nature of incidents, regardless of where in the City they occur. That’s a big part of our Quality of Life.
You can read more about this within a recent KTVA story…AFD Cuts.
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Fire Engines carry small hose used to attack fires, large hose used to pump water from a hydrant to another engine, and ground ladders. Typically engines will carry 3-4 personnel. Engines also respond to medical calls, so they carry Advanced Life Support equipment such as cardiac monitors. In an Emergency Medical System like we have here in Anchorage, engines respond with Mobile Intensive Care Units (ambulances) to assist with patient care, or in the event that an ambulance is unable to respond right away, to initiate patient interventions and stabilize the situation until an ambulance can get to the scene. There are 14 fire engines in the Anchorage Fire Service Area, covering just under 1700 square miles.
Mobile Intensive Care Units are more commonly known as ambulances, and are primarily used to provide emergency medical treatment and patient transports to area hospitals. Ambulances typically carry a crew of two firefighters, one of which is a Paramedic, and the other usually an Emergency Medical Technician. There are 8 ambulances spread throughout the Anchorage bowl and Eagle River. Downtown, Airport Heights, Tudor, Spenard, Muldoon, Huffman, Eagle River, and Dimond. These ambulances transported 13,475 patients in 2008 with one ambulance transporting almost 3000 alone.
Ladder trucks are easily recognizable due to the large aerial ladder attached to the top of the truck. Truck companies usually carry 3 personnel and are primarily used on fires to search for and rescue victims, ventilate structures using large fans and saws, and shutting off utilities. Aerial ladders can be used to rescue victims in upper floors of high rise buildings, and nozzles at the end of the ladder can be used to fight fire where hand held nozzles are ineffective. Trucks also respond to vehicle accidents where extrication tools (jaws-of-life) are necessary, industrial accidents, and water problems, and in the event that no fire engines or ambulances are near, will go to medical calls. Presently there are 5 truck companies operating in the Anchorage Fire Department. They’re located in Eagle River, Downtown, Airport Heights, Spenard, and Dimond.
Water tenders are staffed with a single operator, and carry 2,500 gallons of water to support fire attacks in un-hydranted areas such as Stuckagain Heights, Eagle River, or the Hillside. During extended fire operations in un-hydranted areas, all 5 AFD tenders may be used, as several may be coming back and forth from the incident scene to a water source, while the remainder of the AFD’s water tenders will be actually supplying water to engines and trucks actively fighting the fire.
Battalion Chiefs respond to incidents in suburbans. There are two types of Battalion Chiefs on the Anchorage Fire Department; Fire Battalion Chiefs, and Chief Medical Officers (CMO). These individuals are typically the most senior ranking officials on calls, and will often be in command of major incidents such as structure fires and cardiac arrests. On most days, there are three Fire BC’s and one CMO on duty at a time.
All Line Operations employees of the Anchorage Fire Department are cross-trained in fire suppression and emergency medical response, so medical incidents require the dispatch of one fire engine and one ambulance. Fore more serious calls such as cardiac arrest, the CMO will accompany the initial units to facilitate any needs and notify the receiving hospital of the situation. The majority of structure fires require three fire engines, one truck company, one ambulance, two Fire BCs, and the CMO. Of course, every call is dynamic in nature, and may require more or less resources.