by Chief Ben Palm
They say change is the only constant, which proves to be true. Yarnell Fire District is undergoing changes as are many organizations in the area. Change often occurs with disaster recovery; while recovery from the Yarnell Hill Fire of 2013 continues, many positive things have transpired, leading to opportunities. YFD is developing in the areas of personnel and training.
After three years of dedicated service to the community, Captain Kristee Lewis has been offered an opportunity to advance her personal goals. Kristee will remain with us as a Cadet Leader and Reserve, but is no longer a captain. We are grateful her full time service and wish her success. Others of our staff are pursuing opportunities through education. Jason Hershberger and Joshua Western are in the process of obtaining Paramedic Certification. This will fill a great need in our area.
Another development is the Granite Mountain Hot Shot Memorial Park opening soon. Yarnell Fire personnel are undergoing comprehensive Ropes Rescue Training in preparation for the park’s public use. Ropes training will also be beneficial in case of vehicle accidents on Yarnell hill. Also upcoming is our Emergency Vehicle Operator Course (EVOC) for staff who could not attend the last Engine driver’s training. This safe operation course involves classroom hours and behind the wheel exercises.
The weather has been wonderful, but we know the colder air will arrive. Please remember to prepare your fire place and wood burning stove for the season. Open the dampers and sweep the chimney. Also, as you rake leaves and prepare to dispose of fall foliage, remember you must obtain an open burning permit. They are available in person only at the Fire Administration Building.
The Yarnell Fire District Explorer Cadet Program has grown to 18 Cadets. There is a photo gallery on our website and on our Facebook page. They wear turnout gear, helmets and jump right into training. Our goal is to provide a positive mentoring and inspiring experience for the Explorers.
We would like to remind Yarnell residents of our Knox Box® Program. How it works: homeowners or business owners may purchase a box containing a key to their premises; the box is placed next to the entry door of the building; If Yarnell Fire needs access to the building, rather than breaking in, we will be able to access the Knox Box with our master key, and retrieve the entry key. For information, please contact us: Chief Ben Palm or Denise Roggio, Admin. 928-427-6578. Visit yarnellfire.org
YFD is actively seeking EMTs to volunteer with our department. Please visit our website: yarnellfire.org for application and information.
September 2016 Service Calls
EMS: 8 Wildland Fire: 1 Welfare Checks: 1 Public Assists: 2 Other: 3
By Chief Ben Palm
We’re heading into October and the threat of wildfire has lessened. However there are still steps residents should take for creating defensible space and safe homes. The weeds are growing quickly, thanks to monsoon rains. Please keep your property trimmed; remove brush and leaves. Always secure an Open Burn Permit before burning brush, trash or starting a campfire. You can obtain a permit by visiting the Yarnell Fire Administration Building. As you prepare for fireplace season, make sure your chimney is cleaned. Space heaters and other electric devices should be inspected prior to use: check the electric cords and be sure to plug them into grounded outlets, avoiding the overuse of extension cords. Stay Firewise for the benefit of all.
Captain Kristee Lewis, Jordan Collins, Jeff Shearer and Jason Hershberger attended Arizona State Fire School for continuing education and certifications. They were pleased with the courses and enjoyed their time in Mesa. We will be hosting Ropes Rescue II and III in November; we are also planning an EMT Class for January.
The Explorer’s Cadet Program officially began on Saturday, October 1st, with 17 Cadets. The growth of the program is great with Captains John Rice and Kristee Lewis being the Cadet Leaders. They have many activities planned for the twice monthly training. If you would like information regarding the Yarnell Fire District Explorer’s Cadet Program, contact the Captains at 928-671-0511.
YFD is pleased to have received grant funding and donations for the last few years since the Yarnell Hill Fire. We could not effectively operate without them. We have recently been awarded grants for improving radio communications and updating EMS Equipment. Our mission is to protect life and property to the best of our ability; donations and grants have made it possible for us to fulfill that mission. One way you can support YFD is by supporting the efforts of the Yarnell Fire Auxiliary. They are raising funds for Firefighter Safety projects at YFD. They have an event scheduled for October 15th. Be sure to find their article in the Yellow Sheet.
The District is seeking more volunteers. If you would like to get involved, or know someone who is interested in becoming a volunteer firefighter, please spread the word. We are in need of volunteers who are able to commit to no less than two shifts per month. The benefits of working at YFD are numerous, including many training opportunities. Out of District volunteers are welcome; we offer comfortable crew quarters to minimize travel time. Click here for the Employment Application (PDF). You may also contact the Fire District at 928-427-6578.
August 2016 Service Calls
EMS: 6 – Motor Vehicle Accident: 1 – Public Assists: 1 – Other: 5
By Chief Ben Palm
Yarnell Fire District, along with other fire districts in Yavapai County, is still enforcing a burn ban. What this means is there is no open flame permitted. We hope you are maintaining defensible space around your home and property. Please clean up dead leaves, and keep grass cut. It is advisable to store flammable materials in well-ventilated areas out of direct sunlight. If you would like to know more about the current wildfire risk in Arizona, this resource provides up to date information: www.wildlandfire.az.gov
Yarnell Fire District has acquired an Ambulance (R-407) for Wildland Fire Service. It has been stocked and is ready for wildland and rescue use. Please note that this ambulance is only for that purpose, not for local medical calls. The ambulance can bring extra money to the District and will be available to help with Rope Rescue.
YFD is preparing for Arizona State Fire School in September. This annual event provides continuing education and certifications that keep our crew compliant, keep our skills fresh and help us serve the community to the best of our ability. The YFD Training Center is in the middle of an EMT Training Course. Stay tuned for information about the Explorer’s Cadet Program which will be resume in September. We have two EMTs that are heading to Paramedic School this fall, Josh Western and Jason Hershberger.
We’d like to encourage you to check into The Knox® Box Key Entry Program. Our website has all the information. This program is valuable for property and business owners. Property owners purchase and install a Knox® Box. If there is any type of emergency, it prevents EMS and Fire personnel from having to break into your home or business because we have access to the key box. Again, we encourage you to consider this program as an option for your property. Visit our website: yarnellfire.org for information.
We are grateful to have an active Yarnell Fire Auxiliary. They meet the fourth Tuesday of the month at 2pm and would love to have more community involvement. They are planning a large event for mid fall, and volunteers are welcome. Also our regular fire board meetings are the third Monday of the month at 10am. Board Agendas and Minutes are posted on our website.
The mission of Yarnell Fire District is to protect the public – life and property; to promote fire safety and awareness, and provide educational services to our residents for their health and welfare. We appreciate your support of YFD. Questions? Visit www.yarnellfire.org or Contact Chief Palm at 928-427-6578.
June Service Calls:
Incidents: 12 – Average response time: 3.57 (3 min. 34 sec.)
EMS: 6 Motor Vehicle Accident: 0 Welfare checks: 0
Mutual Aid: 0 Public Assists: 2 Other: 1 Fire: 3
By Chief Ben Palm
On June 8th, Yarnell residents experienced the fury of another fire. This time, the blaze called Tenderfoot, took no homes and more importantly, no lives. Yarnell Fire District wants to thank all of our residents for taking preparedness seriously. We all learned valuable lessons from the 2013 fire, and this time we were a prepared community. The recent Fuels Abatement Project proved successful in protecting our homes. The initial attack on Tenderfoot was also an important factor. But the community’s preparedness by creating defensible space and doing as Emergency Officials instructed was also a very important step in protecting lives and property. As your fire Chief, I personally thank you and the YFD Board of Directors for their support of the Fuels Project. I also thank YFD Captain John Rice and Volunteer Jeff Shearer, who responded in the initial attack.
Please continue to be Firewise. The most important thing is to be aware that there is a county-wide Stage 1 Fire Ban. This means no open flame is allowed and burn permits will not be issued. Smoking cigars and cigarettes is limited to private property. Also, keep your property clean and grass cut.
Reminder: the Knox® Box Key Entry Program is available in our district. You may purchase a box and install it. This will prevent EMS and Fire personnel from having to break into your home or business during an emergency crisis. Visit our website: yarnellfire.org for information.
Yarnell Fire Training Center Events: Due to the Tenderfoot Fire, EMT Class was rescheduled, and began on June 28th. It will continue through September 3rdh. Ropes Rescue II and III will be rescheduled for another date. Always check our website for class details: yarnellfire.com
Cedar Creek Fire info/personnel goes here:
The Yarnell Memorial Run was a wonderful success! Again, thanks to the community for supporting this event. Over $10,000 was raised for our district alone, and we were able to support the Eric Marsh and William Warneke Foundations. The next race is already scheduled for June 3, 2017.
The mission of Yarnell Fire District is to protect the public – life and property; to promote fire safety and awareness, and provide educational services to our residents for their health and welfare. Our commitment to Public Safety and Welfare is the most important work we do. We appreciate your support of YFD. Questions? Contact Chief Palm at 928-427-6578.
May 2016 Calls:
EMS: 13 Public Assists: 7 Fire: 1
Yarnell Fire District was pleased to present an AED for Public Access at the Yarnell Community Center on Tuesday, June 7th.
The purchase of 4 AED’s was made possible by a grant from the Firefighter’s Support Foundation. The department now has much needed back up units!
Thanks to the Firefighter’s Support Foundation.
Prepare For Summer
by Chief Ben Palm
On April 14th, I, along with many other fire chiefs, attended a briefing and press conference about the outlook for the upcoming wildfire season. Governor Doug Ducey and Arizona State Forester Jeff Whitney spoke to attendees and media from all over the state. The 2016 season has already become a problem in Arizona. Since January, there have been 294 fires totaling 21,383 acres. For comparison, in the first quarter of 2015, there were 147 fires and 452 acres burned. The Governor is concerned about prevention, as we all should be: “According to statistics provided by fire officials, 90 percent of wildfires every year are human-caused, stemming from unattended campfires, discarded cigarettes or any other source of extreme heat. The 294 fires so far this year all have been ruled as human-caused. That means they could have been avoided.” (Yihyun Jeong, The Republic | azcentral.com, April 14, 2016)
Here’s what you can do to be Firewise: Create defensible space around your property, trim overgrowth and cut tall grasses. Please do not burn campfires, trash or brush without a permit. Stop by the Admin building or call 928-427-6578. Dispose of cigarettes and cigars properly. Be certain they are completely out. It is important to make sure your household has an evacuation plan and working smoke detectors.
Remember the Knox® Box Key Entry Program has been instituted in our district. You may purchase a box and install it. This will prevent EMS and Fire personnel from having to break into your home or business during an emergency crisis. Visit our website: yarnellfire.org for information.
Yarnell Fire Training Center Events: Beginning Tuesday, May 17th is an EMT Class. The cost for the 11 week program is $800 and includes the text book. This is an intensive and comprehensive program to prepare students for the National EMT Exam. There will be Ropes Rescue I, II and III Classes for three weekends in June. Prerequisites apply. To learn more, feel free to visit our website: http://yarnellfire.org. To obtain registration packets, call us at 928-427-6578.
The first year of the YFD Explorer Cadet Program is coming to a close. The leaders, parents and cadets are pleased with the results of the program. Saturday, May 14th is the last meeting for this school year. Explorers will resume in September. For information and registration, be sure to check our website: yarnellfire.org. We plan to post the registration details in June.
Upcoming events: The Yarnell Memorial Run, Saturday, June 4th, at the Yarnell Assembly of God, 17125 Fountain Hill Lane in Yarnell. Register online http://yarnellmemorialrun.com. You may also register by mail or in person by visiting the Fire Administration Building. The 19k is a new category this year, and teams are also available. The website has all the details. Thank you to our sponsors! GOLD: Augie’s Restaurant in Prescott, Native Air, Air Methods Transport; Swift Charities and Trilogy at Wickenburg Ranch. BRONZE SPONSORS: Yarnell Community Presbyterian Church, Yarnell Peeples Valley Chamber of Commerce, Jones Ford in Wickenburg, Wickenburg Community Hospital, and VFW Post 541 in Prescott. Without sponsor support, we would not be able to have this annual event. We are also grateful for volunteers to help us prepare and on race day. If you’d like to help or participate, contact Denise Roggio, 928-427-6578.
The mission of Yarnell Fire District is to protect the public – life and property, promote fire safety and awareness, and provide educational services to our residents for their health and welfare. In keeping with that mission, we are continuing our Pre-Disaster Planning and implementing Fire Prevention & Safety Projects. Thank you to our committed and hard working crew for the fantastic job on fuels abatement and for timely EMS response. Questions? Contact Chief Palm at 928-427-6578.
March 2016 Call Volume: Total calls 25, EMS calls 16, Motor Vehicle Accidents: 1
Welfare Checks 1, Public Assists 4, Mutual Aid Provided 2, Structure Fires 1, Wildfires 2
by Chief Ben Palm
We have already had many wildfires this year. It is important to keep your grass and overgrowth cut. The March wind has lived up to its reputation, and can cause a fire to spread rapidly. Create defensible space around your home.
Our Fuels Abatement Project has been very successful, thanks to the hard work of Joe Miller, Aaron Casem, Hayden Bartlett, Cody Wilson, Derrick Piper, Bruce Olson and Eric Sparks. We welcome Eric as the newest member at YFD. The abatement will continue through the summer. So far, 80 acres have been cleared. Part of that crew has moved on for the season to work for the Bureau of Land Management. We especially thank Joe Miller and Hayden Bartlett, who have new opportunities and won’t be returning to Yarnell next winter. We wish them all the best.
Just a reminder: the Knox Box Program is available in Yarnell. Here’s the details: a homeowner or business owner may purchase a box containing a key to their premises; the box is placed next to the entry door of the building; If Yarnell Fire needs access to the building, rather than breaking in, we will be able to access the Knox Box with our master key, and retrieve the entry key. For information, please contact us: Chief Ben Palm or Denise Roggio, Admin. 928-427-6578. Visit yarnellfire.org
The Yarnell Fire Training Center is offering another EMT Class beginning Tuesday, May 17th. The cost for the 11 week program is $800 and includes the text book. This is an intensive and comprehensive program to prepare students for the National EMT Exam. We are also offering a class for EMT’s, an IV, Albuterol, Combi/King Tube Certification Class, which will be held on Saturday, April 30th at 8am. The course is one day only, and costs $100. To learn more about our classes, feel free to visit our website: http://yarnellfire.org. Register by calling 928-427-6578.
Congratulations to Denise Roggio, our SAFER Grant Administrator, who earned her Certified Grant Writer® Professional Credential through the American Grant Writers Association. This is beneficial for Denise, our department and the community.
Upcoming events: The Yarnell Memorial Run, Saturday, June 4th. Register online http://yarnellmemorialrun.com. You may also register by mail or in person by visiting the Fire Administration Building. The 19k is a new category this year, and teams are also available. The website has all the details. Please patronize our sponsors!
We are frequently asked about the Granite Mountain Hotshot State Park, which will be located at the incident site. If you ride southbound from Yarnell down Hwy 89, you’ll notice the construction taking place for the parking area and trail head. Officials have set the goal of opening the park by June 30th this year. We will provide more details in the near future.
The mission of Yarnell Fire District is to protect the public – life and property, promote fire safety and awareness, and provide educational services to our residents for their health and welfare. In keeping with that mission, we are instituting a Pre-Disaster Plan; at this time Yarnell’s businesses are being evaluated for such items as construction material, roof type, means of egress and proximity to fire hydrants. This will help us better protect the structures in case of a fire or any disaster. Our goal is to evaluate the residential structures in the near future.
Questions? Contact Chief Palm at 928-427-6578
February 2016 Calls: Total calls 12, EMS calls 3, Public Assists 8, Other 1
Ropes rescue Technician Certification Courses coming in June. Get registered early.
For qualifications and more information…