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Thread: 2 Utah Inmates Die Fighting Wildfires

  1. #1
    Registered User SeaBreeze's Avatar
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    2 Utah Inmates Die Fighting Wildfires

    2 Utah Inmates Die Fighting Wildfires

    LON SLEPICKA
    Firehouse.Com News

    Lightning struck a firefighting crew in Utah's Stansbury Mountains, about 45 miles west of Salt Lake City, killing two and injuring four others Wednesday afternoon.

    The crew, called the Flame-N-Go's, is made up of inmates from the Utah State Prison. They had been working a fire that covered about 250 acres and was 100 percent contained late Wednesday.

    The men killed are Michael Bishop, 27, and Rodgie Braithwaite, 26. Bishop would have been up for parole in July 2002. Braithwaite was set for parole in October of next year. The four injured have been released from area hospitals.

    Mary Ellis with the Fallen Firefighters Foundation in Emmitsburg, Md., said the two firefighters killed would likely be considered Line-of-Duty Deaths. The U.S. Fire Administration has always honored prison inmates who were involved in firefighting duties when they died, she said.

    Glen Foreman, public affairs officer with the Utah Bureau of Land Management, said the crew was doing mop-up work when they saw the storm coming. They were moving to shelter when the lightning struck.

    Foreman said the crews from the prison system have been working wildfires for 22 years. "They are some of our best trained and best experienced firefighters. On the fire line they are firefighters. They are the most dedicated you can find," he said.

    In the 22 years, there has never been a fatality among the inmates, which run several crews during the wildfire season, Foreman said. He had nothing but praise for their work saying they do a "superb job".

    This year the NFFF will honor Martin Stiles, 40, an inmate from Los Angeles County, California, who died while fighting a wildland fire in July 1999.



    http://www.firehouse.com/lodd/2000/ut_aug23.html

  2. #2
    Registered User SeaBreeze's Avatar
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    Bishop, Michael Todd

    Age: 27
    Rank: Inmate Firefighter
    Status: Volunteer
    Incident Date: 08/23/2000
    Incident Time: 12:12
    Death Date: 08/23/2000

    Cause of Death: Exposure
    Nature of Death: Electrocution
    Emergency Duty: Yes
    Duty Type: Fireground Operations
    Activity Type: Cutting Fire Breaks (Wildland)
    Fixed Prop. Use: Outdoor Property

    Fire Dept. Info:
    Flame-N-Go Handline Fire Unit, Utah State Prison
    P.O. Box 250
    Draper, Utah 84020
    Chief: Captain Robert Powell

    Final Summary:
    Firefighter Bishop and Firefighter Braithwaite were members of a 20-person, Type 2 hand crew assigned to the North Stansbury fire, about 40 miles west of Salt Lake City. The crew had been transported by helicopter to the fire line for work. The crew was assembled for work at approximately 11:25 a.m. At just after noon, a short squad of six firefighters, including Firefighter Bishop and Firefighter Braithwaite, proceeded toward their assigned work area. A storm cell with lightning, heavy rain, and marble-sized hail moved into the area. Bishop, Braithwaite, and another firefighter took refuge under nearby trees, and the rest of the squad moved to a lower point. Lightning struck the trees where the firefighters were located. Firefighters Bishop and Braithwaite were found in respiratory arrest. The other firefighter was injured. Emergency procedures, including CPR, were initiated, and the injured firefighters were removed to the hospital by helicopter. Despite these efforts, Bishop and Braithwaite were later pronounced dead. The cause of death for both firefighters was listed as electrocution due to lightning



    http://www.usfa.fema.gov/application...l.cfm?p_id=742

  3. #3
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    Braithwaite, Rodgie R.

    Age: 26
    Rank: Inmate Firefighter
    Status: Volunteer
    Incident Date: 08/23/2000
    Incident Time: 12:12
    Death Date: 08/23/2000

    Cause of Death: Exposure
    Nature of Death: Electrocution
    Emergency Duty: Yes
    Duty Type: Fireground Operations
    Activity Type: Cutting Fire Breaks (Wildland)
    Fixed Prop. Use:Outdoor Property

    Fire Dept. Info:
    Flame-N-Go Handline Fire Unit, Utah State Prison
    P.O. Box 250
    Draper, Utah 84020
    Chief: Captain Robert Powell

    Final Summary:

    Firefighter Bishop and Firefighter Braithwaite were members of a 20-person, Type 2 hand crew assigned to the North Stansbury fire, about 40 miles west of Salt Lake City. The crew had been transported by helicopter to the fire line for work. The crew was assembled for work at approximately 11:25 a.m. At just after noon, a short squad of six firefighters, including Firefighter Bishop and Firefighter Braithwaite, proceeded toward their assigned work area. A storm cell with lightning, heavy rain, and marble-sized hail moved into the area. Bishop, Braithwaite, and another firefighter took refuge under nearby trees, and the rest of the squad moved to a lower point. Lightning struck the trees where the firefighters were located. Firefighters Bishop and Braithwaite were found in respiratory arrest. The other firefighter was injured. Emergency procedures, including CPR, were initiated, and the injured firefighters were removed to the hospital by helicopter. Despite these efforts, Bishop and Braithwaite were later pronounced dead. The cause of death for both firefighters was listed as electrocution due to lightning



    http://www.usfa.fema.gov/application...l.cfm?p_id=743

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