Be Safe at Seafair

SEATTLE – This weekend is Seafair and we want everyone to have fun and stay safe while on the water. Here are some tips on how to do so:

Boating safety:

  • Ensure your boat has a working smoke alarm. Test alarms monthly.
  • Have a U.S. Coast Guard approved fire extinguisher on board and know how to use it. Mount the extinguisher near an exit to prevent being trapped.
  • Dispose of oily rags in a metal container with a tight-fitting lid.
  • Fuel portable tanks on the dock, not on your vessel.
  • State law requires personal flotation devices for each person aboard a vessel.
  • Never swim in or near marinas, docks or boatyards.
  • Have your boat inspected by a certified electrician.
  • Boats with AC systems should have isolation transformers or equipment leakage circuit interrupter protection.
  • Prevent carbon monoxide poisoning while boating:
    • Gas vapors will accumulate in low spots – before fueling, close all hatches, compartments and covers.
    • After fueling, open everything up and ventilate.
    • Swim and play away from areas where engines vent their exhaust.
    • Educate all passengers about the signs and symptoms of CO poisoning (irritated eyes, headache, nausea, dizziness).
    • Never block exhaust outlets. Blocking outlets can cause CO to build up in the cabin and cockpit areas – even when hatches, windows, portholes, and doors are closed.
    • Dock, beach, or anchor at least 20-feet away from the nearest boat that is running a generator or engine. Exhaust from a nearby vessel can send CO into the cabin and cockpit of a boat.

Drowning prevention:

  • The safest decision may be to not enter the water. Think about the risks when swimming.
  • Wear a lifejacket. Infants and children should always wear lifejackets when in or near open water. Air filled or foam toys, are not a substitute for wearing a U.S. Coast Guard approved lifejacket.
  • Learn to swim, including water safety and survival skills. Learn to float and tread water for at least 10 minutes. It’s good to improve skills in a pool before hitting open water.
  • Drowning often happens when inexperienced or weaker swimmers try to keep up with more experienced ones. Have conversations with your children and teens about swimming risks.
  • Supervise children in or near water. Always stay within touching distance of young children.
  • Do not use alcohol or drugs during water activities.
  • Learn first aid and CPR
  • If you have an emergency, call 911

Seattle Fire will also be staffing extra units throughout the weekend in case anyone needs help. We will be providing fire suppression services, marine and water rescue services, and emergency medical services (EMS) for this event.

  • Fire suppression: Two engine companies will be staffed in the Stan Sayres pits for when the hydro planes and boats refuel.
  • Marine and Water Rescue: Fireboat Chief Seattle will be out on the water to help with any boating issues. There will also be rescue swimmers on a Boeing Fireboat, rescue swimmers staged onshore, and Seattle Firefighter/Medics on the Seattle Police Harbor Patrol Boat.
  • EMS: Firefighter/Medics will be staffing bikes and a medic unit around Genesee Park

Photo courtesy of John Odegard


Overturned Tanker

SEATTLE – On August 1, 2018 around 10:33 p.m. the Fire Alarm Center received a report of an overturned tanker at Chelan Ave SW and Delridge Way SW.  Based on that information, a hazmat response was dispatched to the intersection.  Engine 36 arrived first, reporting that half of a double tanker had rolled over.  Prior to their arrival, the driver had exited the truck and was not injured.

Gasoline was leaking from the overturned tanker, and because of this, firefighters applied foam to suppress gasoline vapors and to create a foam blanket over the fuel.  As a precaution, the nearby Chelan Café was evacuated.   Gasoline was leaking into a storm drain so Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) and the United States Coast Guard were notified and responded to the incident. Once the incident became stabilized, a private contractor pumped out the remaining fuel in the overturned tanker which was then uprighted.

Over 35 units responded including the Hazardous Material Team, the Fireboat, and 21 engines. Seattle Fire remained on scene until 8:30 a.m. then turned the scene over to SPU to continue monitoring and conduct clean up operations.  SPU estimates that around 3,000 gallons of gasoline leaked from the tanker and confirmed some fuel did enter the Duwamish Waterway.

Wedgewood House Fire

SEATTLE – On July 25, 2018, at 5:20 p.m. the Fire Alarm Center received multiple 911 calls for a house fire on the 2300 Blk. of NE 94th St.  Upon arrival, E40 had heavy fire on the West side of a single family dwelling, including a deck.  E40 quickly applied water on the fire from the exterior before transitioning to the interior of the house.

Fire did spread to the attic, requiring  a ladder company to go the roof to cut holes in it to allow the fire and hot gases escape from the attic.  While on the roof, a firefighter fell through it and into the attic.  The firefighter was able to exit the house on his own and suffered minor injuries.  He was transported to Harborview Medical Center (HMC) as a precaution.  A second firefighter was also transported to HMC as a precaution due to heat related exertion.  There were no injuries to occupants, and they all were outside of the home prior to E40’s arrival.

The Incident Commander declared the fire under control by 5:42 p.m. and extinguished by 5:47 p.m.  At the height of the fire, there were 6 engine companies and 3 ladder trucks.  The cause of the fire was ruled as undetermined with an estimated loss of $20,000 to contents and $54,000 to structure.

Photos courtesy of John Odegard

Queen Anne House Fire

SEATTLE – On July 23, 2018 around 7:30 p.m., Engine 20 was dispatched to the 2900 BLK 9 Ave W for a report of a rubbish fire.  While en-route, the Fire Alarm Center received more calls indicating that this was a house fire, and the alarm was quickly upgraded.  Upon arrival, firefighters found heavy fire on the exterior of the rear of the house.  Firefighters quickly put water on the fire, knocking it down, and then transitioned to an interior attack to push the fire out.  The fire was under control within 25 minutes.

The  two residents of the house were already out when Seattle Fire arrived but did suffer minor injuries and were transported to Harborview Medical Center in stable condition.  There were no injuries to firefighters.  There were 24 units on scene including 8 engines and 2 ladder trucks.

Fire investigators ruled the fire as accidental, and determined it was caused by a barbecue grill underneath the back deck.  Estimated loss is $150,000 to structure, and $150,000 to contents.

Photos courtesy of John Odegard


Join Us: Station 5 Open House

SEATTLE – The Seattle Fire Department and the Seattle Fire Fighters Union, Local 27, invite the community to attend an Open House of newly remodeled Fire Station 5 located along the Seattle Waterfront.  The event will take place on Friday June 1st from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Community members will have the opportunity to tour the remodeled station, meet their local firefighters, explore children’s activities, and enjoy refreshments.

Station 5 Background

Fire Station 5 occupies a prominent site at 925 Alaskan Way on Seattle’s busy and historic waterfront, in between the Colman Dock ferry terminal to the south and the iconic Ivar’s Acres of Clams restaurant to the north. Station 5 has called this location home since 1902, though the current station was built in 1963. Fire Station 5 houses both the land-based Engine Company 5 and Fireboat Engine Company 4. Fireboats currently docked at the fire station’s pier are the 108-foot Leschi, a 50-foot fast attack fireboat, and a 25-foot rescue boat.

About the Project

Remodeled Station 5 includes the following improvements:

  • Structural upgrades to the building and pier to meet current applicable seismic codes
  • Interior renovations and modernizations of the crew quarters, administrative areas, kitchen, dayroom, and fitness areas
  • Renovations of support facilities to provide proper decontamination facilities, adequate maintenance and work space, and improved equipment and supply storage areas
  • Updated mechanical, plumbing, electrical and communications systems to support the crews and the fire apparatus