Daily Camera (Boulder)
Area firefighters join battle,
As wildfires continue to rage in Colorado and on the West Coast, firefighters from the Boulder area are on the ground helping to fight the flames.
Among them is Mountain View Fire Capt. Dean Street. Mountain View Fire Rescue is based in Longmont, but Dean and his crew have been staying in Fort Collins while they battle the Cameron Peak Fire.
“So we get up there, have our evening briefing and work throughout the night,” Street said.
The primary job for the night crew is fire-watching overnight. Much of the work consists of patrolling Colo. 14 and checking structures that may
have been compromised by fire damage.
Street has previously fought wildfires in California and Oregon. However, he says the pandemic has made his current experience is unique.
“Yeah this one is so different just because of the whole COVID issue,” he said.
Typically for wildfires, the firefighters have a camp. However, in an effort to limit the spread, the crews eat their meals in restaurants. Street said health screenings are conducted every morning with an app for anyone going onsite that day. Additionally, the crews practice social distancing whenever possible.
“At all our meetings and briefings we’re wearing masks and trying to stay apart from each other as well,” he said.
Simultaneously facing a wildfire and a virus is no small task, but Street said he and his crew are up to the challenge.
“It’s just one more thing to deal with. That’s what we do … we solve problems. When we’re faced with a problem we just try to fix it,” he said.
Street said he is optimistic that with their continued efforts and the cooler fall weather, the fire will be out soon. In the meantime, he said the support from the Fort Collins community has not gone unnoticed.
“We’ve had folks by our meals in town up here in Fort Collins,” he said. “We want them to know that we really appreciate the support.”