Tahoe National Forest fire crews honored for emergency response | SierraSun.com

Tahoe National Forest fire crews honored for emergency response

Special to the Sun
Courtesy photoTahoe National Forest Fire Captains honored by Pacific Southwest Region

TRUCKEE – Three engine strike teams from the Eldorado/Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit, Plumas and Tahoe National Forests were recognized by the Regional Forester as Honor Award recipients recently for their response to the Waldo Canyon Fire near Colorado Springs, Colo.

Strike Teams 4601C, 3660C and 4660C arrived at the Waldo Canyon Fire on June 26, 2012. Driven by winds up to 65 mph and burning through historically parched fuels, the fire raged into the Mountain Shadows community, spotting extensively and displaying extreme fire behavior creating very challenging conditions. The strike teams, each composed of five engine crews, worked through the night to protect lives and property.

“Comments from Incident Management Team members who were directing the suppression efforts, local agency personnel, and Colorado Springs residents consistently praised the outstanding efforts of the engine strike teams. They emphasized that the strike teams were responsible for saving many homes on the night of June 26 and 27 with their decisive and aggressive actions and that their efforts directly contributed to the 80 percent survival rate of residences impacted by the fire,” stated Tahoe Forest Supervisor Tom Quinn, who was working on the fire as Agency Administrator. “I am very proud of these men and woman and their effectiveness in fighting this fire which eventually burned over 18,200 acres and has been described as one of the most destructive fires in Colorado State history.”

The Strike Teams were also specifically recognized for their efforts by the President of the United States when he toured the Waldo Canyon Fire on June 29, 2012.

TNF Strike Team participants

Strike Team Leader: Robert Hilfer

Engine 333, White Cloud Station east of Nevada City: Andy Achter, Captain; Lee Helgeson; Bill Bakker; Dana Salisbury; and Dustin Friedman.

Engine 31, Camptonville: James Prince, Captain; Matt Mullins; Daniel Sadlo; Christopher Buckbee; and Danny Rasmussen.

Engine 42, Foresthill: Mike Durocher, Captain; Eric Husmann; Tyler Bosworth; Daniel Manry; David Foster.

Engine 71, Truckee: Jesse Green, Assigned Captain; Ryan Herrera; Wade Boan; Bryce Dana Boyer; and Sabrina Retterer.

Engine 73, Truckee: Matt Bradford, Assigned Captain; Adam Smith; Richard Herrera, III; Gregory Lowdermilk; and Jens Schneyder.