Fire Districts from around the Puget Sound come together to improve response to Wildland Urban Interface fires

[Graham, WA] Fire districts across Western Washington are experiencing an increase in wildfires and a subsequent increase in need for training on how to effectively fight those fires.

During the week of May 9th, leaders from ten Fire Districts across the Puget Sound gathered in Graham, WA to learn how to teach Wildland Urban Interface training to firefighters whose primary focus has been structural firefighting.

The course, Responding to the Interface (RTI), was developed by the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) and provides comprehensive training and information regarding Wildland Urban Interface response, command, strategies, and tactics which will allow them to operate safely in their community’s urban interface environment.

Firefighters who participated in this course practiced field skills within a residential neighborhood near Graham Fire & Rescue Station 95. This location was selected because it represent a mixed environment of large multi-acre properties and green belts, which back up to residential subdivisions. Residents were alerted to the training.

Elected officials – including Congresswoman Kim Schrier, Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz, IAFF 7th District Vice President Ricky Walsh, and Washington State Council of Fire Fighters President Dennis Lawson were in attendance to observe the training exercise.