Letter: ‘We don’t have enough people to replace those wildland fire crews that have left’

Battle Ground resident Gary McPeak shares his concern that Fire District 3 won’t be able to respond in the case of wildland fires

I read about Larch Corrections Center closing and am concerned about my fire district’s ability to respond in case of wildland fires. There was a big one a few years ago and more are coming. I live in Clark County Fire District 3 and we don’t have enough people to replace those wildland fire crews that have left.

Gary McPeak
Gary McPeak

I worked in the fire service for 34 years. When I started back in 1960 the fire department that employed me had 3- and 4-person engine crews. Fire District 3 has only 2-person engine crews and it’s 2024!

That’s not enough people to enter a burning building. By law you need three which means our firefighters have to wait for another engine to arrive. We can’t even staff all our fire stations full-time. This is unsafe for our community.

Fire District 3 is asking our community to approve a fire levy lid lift to hire more firefighters. I know all of us are paying more for everything. But I think the most important public service funded by tax dollars is fire/EMS.

This is not because I was a firefighter. It’s because it saves lives.

Gary McPeak
Battle Ground

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