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KCFD7 starts new technical rescue program

PRESS RELEASE

In 2022 KCFD7 kickstarted a new technical rescue program, both internally and with our neighboring agencies.

In February 2021 the district received a generous donation from Life Support to host an Ice Rescue Technician class. Six career firefighters and six volunteer firefighters participated in the multi-day class, braving near single-digit temperatures and heavy snowfall. They became the only certified ice rescue technicians in Upper Kittitas County, with the only other agency supporting this level of service being the KCSO.

In May of 2021 Life Support generously provided funding to host a Rope Rescue Operations class. 12 district members participated in the four-day class and learned how to package and rescue patients in less than vertical terrain.

In May of 2022 Life Support continued its support for building a technical rescue program within Fire District 7 by providing funding for a Rope Rescue Technician class as well as another Rope Rescue Operations Class. 12 district members participated in the technician level class, and four of our members participated in the operations level class. Other spots in the ops class were offered to neighboring agencies and Fire District 6, Fire District 3, UKCM1, and Roslyn Fire expressed interest in sending members through this class. 

As of May 2022 KCFD7 has 12 members trained in the highest level of technical rope rescue, 7 members trained in operations level of rope rescue, and 9 members trained in the highest technical level for ice rescue. The district is actively developing a strong training program to ensure members stay fresh on all disciplines of each training level. Many of our members are actively involved with the new Upper County Technical Rescue Team which is a joint effort between Kittitas County SAR, KCFD7, KCFD6, KCFD3, Cle Elum Fire, Roslyn Fire. This joint effort will help provide technical rescue anywhere in the county when requested. While KCFD7 currently has members trained in multiple levels of technical rescue, it is not always guaranteed to get enough response from our members to successfully perform a rescue. Technical rescues are a labor-intensive incident type that requires an “all hands on deck” approach. We are proud to bring these rescue capabilities to Upper Kittitas County and thank Life Support for all they have done to kelp kickstart this program.