West Valley Firefighters

Quarterly Newsletter

1st Quarter of 2012


Chief's Monthly Report

Chief's Monthly Report

Fire Department

Monthly Progress Report

West Valley Fire Department

Yakima County Fire District 12

For the Meeting of July 9, 2019

Agenda Topic:            Department Monthly Progress Report

Prepared By:              Chief Nathan Craig

Date Prepared:           July 3, 2019

The primary purpose of this report is to keep the Board of Fire Commissioners informed as to the activities and progress on major programs or objectives.  The items listed, as near as possible, are in priority order.  As a second purpose, this report will be shared with the Officers Management Team and all fire personnel.


As of July 8th, we are back to full admin staffing with the addition of Caty Cantrell our new Office Assistant.  Austin Yearout, Natalie Rivera, Jarret Paulin and Kasey Robbins have all been granted leave of absences this past month.  Firefighter Frank Woodin has started the process of retire/rehire and will be separated for three months rejoining October 1st.

Starting July, we have 90 volunteers, 75 in service for operations, 9 support and 6 on leave of absence.  Our total number of personnel is 100.

Strategic Planning:

In June we completed the update of the 2020-2024 plan, at this time a draft has been sent to all members for comment and the final version will be on next month’s agenda for official adoption.

On the agenda we will review the action plan from June, this month our focus is wrapping up several initiatives we have been working on as well as start updating our Capital Improvement Plan and Recruitment Plan.

Budget/Finance: By Officer Boisselle

VFIS has submitted an invoice for our 2019/2020 renewal. The renewal itself will be $45,876 which includes increases at Station 52.  The increase of the Umbrella from 5 million to 6 million, increased our policy by $500, for a total of $46,376.

At the June Officer Meeting the Officers were given the Budget Request forms to start the 2020 budget process.  Completed forms are due at the August meeting. The staff will then review and prioritize the requests.

Due to the loss of my helper, I was unable to complete the budget summary through June 2019.  I will have this completed for the August meeting so we can review where we are in the 2019 budget and if any changes need to be made.

Department Training and Safety: By Captain Jim Johnston

June Drills included: Equipment Check, Hose Testing (Stations 51 & 52), Extrication (Station 53), Engine Company Attack Evolutions (Station 54), Safety Stand Down, Wildland Fireline Const / L&I Heat Awareness.

Developed the July Drill Schedule: Equipment Check / SCBA Quarterly, Ladder Fundamentals, District Circuit Drill, SCBA Confidence, and Firefighter Olympics.

On June 5th the Safety and Training Committee met for the 2nd quarter meeting.

We have received the video equipment and software budgeted in 2019 to begin developing our own training videos soon.

We have confirmed the class dates for the IAFC Volunteer and Combination Officers Section course “Beyond Hoses and Helmets” September 21-22.  Minimum class size is 25-30 and we are hoping to fill the class in house so topics and discussions can center on our Department.

Fire Prevention / Public Education: By Captain Jim Johnston

Now that the school year has come to an end the Summer months are generally pretty slow in Prevention and Education opportunities.

On June 1st Lieutenant Cameron Haubrich put on a public CPR class, 10 people received the training.

On June 7th I visited Yakima Tieton Irrigation and conducted a Fire Extinguisher training class for them utilizing our Bullex Fire Extinguisher training tool. There were about 20 personnel that received training that morning.


In June there were a total of 79 incidents of which 75 were handled by our personnel.

Incidents:                                        YTD                                                    

Station 51                   17                   77

Station 52                   20                   72       

Station 53                   10                  37

Station 54                   2                     19

Station 50                   26                   156

Yakima                        1                     19

Ambulance Only         3                     34

2019 Total                                            414

Incident Type:                        Month            Type                                            YTD

Fire                              15                    8 building, 1 cooking, 6 brush                        44

EMS                             46                    39 EMS, 6 MVC, 1 other                                 289 Hazardous Condition 1                      1 overheated motor                                       6 Service Call                 6                      5 assist invalid, 1 water leak                           31 Good Intent                8                      4 controlled burn, 2 smoke, 1 wrong, 1 other21 False Alarm                 3                      3 fire alarm                                                     20

Action Taken:                         Month            Type                                               YTD

Canceled enroute       13                    1 AA, 1 EMS, 1 AFA, 1 Food on stove             50 Extinguishment          9                      4 bldg, 5 brush                                                20 Provide BLS                 38                                                                                            250 Assist Invalid               5                                                                                              27 Investigate                  11                    1 AA, 2 MVC, 1 smoke, 3 contrl brn, 2 bldg    40 Investigate fire out     1                      Bldg                                                                 6 Other                          1                                                                                              11

Automatic Aid Received (both agencies respond)    Automatic Aid Given                            

From Highland            1                                  To Highland                3

From Yakima               1                                  To Yakima                   5

From Gleed                 0

YTD                 5                                              YTD                 25       

Mutual Aid Received  0     Mutual Aid Given       4 (3-Dist 1 & 1 Yak)                                  YTD                 0                                              YTD                 6         

Response Times: (Target= within 1 mile of station 8 minutes or less, add 2 minutes every mile after)                        Qualifying Alarms: 45, Target met: mo 29 (65%) yr 175 (70%), Target not met: mo 16 (35%) yr 75 (30%)

Losses: $2,510 (Rags in cupboard, couch on porch, insulation/wiring in attic, kitchen fire)

This past month we made some changes to our CAD recommendations, specifically to reduce the number of apparatus dispatched for automatic fire alarms and add Rescue 54 to all structure fire responses in the District.  While making these changes we also modified the response plan within some of our automatic aid areas.  I am also reviewing our brush fire response; our typical three station response June-Sept has led to a large amount of equipment being dispatched to minor calls.  I have contacted SunComm to see how they are classifying these calls this year opposed to years past and will make the necessary changes.

Recruitment & Retention:  By LT Chris Lyons

We have moved the time frame of our recruit school from the winter months back to summer which will also be changing our major recruiting time, as well as our application timeline. I have been working with Captain Johnston to keep the two process’s in line with one another. For the 2020 application process we will take applications until 5:00 P.M. on Tuesday March 31st, Wednesday April 1st will be the open house invite for the applicants, Saturday April 18th will be the Work Ability Test, Wednesday April 22nd will be the interview night, and the letters will go out Friday April 24th. Using this timeline will give the applicant the whole month of May to get the medical physical done and begin recruit school on June 1st. I will be updating the recruitment plan to reflect this change.

Futures Program / Cadet Program:  By LT Chris Lyons

I have been using the summer vacation to review the 2018/2019 school year to find ways of improving the class. I have been moving some of the chapters around to better utilize the time that the students are in class. I will be moving all the curriculum that does not have an outside portion to the winter months giving us more time outside when the weather is favorable.


We are currently working through the lighting upgrades budgeted for this year, selected the landscaper for Station 54 and received the new defibs.  Station 52 final inspection was completed, now we can begin the small finish projects we planned for 2019.  Lt. Lyons has started the process of receiving demo TIC units in anticipation of our 2020 budget.

Most of the arborvitae at Station 53 that didn’t look healthy coming out of winter turned brown. Captain Vetsch advised me of the situation at last month’s Captains meeting, at the time we planned to ride them out as long as we could to keep the visual barrier up and I advised him we plan to build a fence next year.  Since then a neighbor phoned in a complaint regarding them so we removed all the dead trees and will continue to remove any additional trees until next year when we take them all out.


As a member of the EMS Admin Board last month I participated in a strategic planning session for the EMS office.  The process was started a couple years ago with a SWOT, we reviewed that information and provided the Chair with information to update and begin creating a plan.


As part of a bill passed in 2018 by Washington’s legislature (SHB 2561), the Washington Wildland Fire Advisory Committee has been tasked with quantifying the amount of unprotected land in Washington State and developing recommendations to protect that land (including identifying potential funding sources).  As a District adjacent to unprotected lands they requested our input on how best to protect these lands, I took their survey and offered suggestions of improvements to the overall fire protection within our area.


We applied for a DNR surplus wildland engine this past month and should find out if we are selected by the end of August.  The truck is given to us free and clear if we put it in service for one year, after one year we can modify or use the truck in any way we need.  This is a good opportunity for the District to increase our fleet of available brush trucks in District as well as for state mobilization.

Good of the Order:

The seminar in Chelan was good however, I believe the strategic planning retreat we held prior to the seminar was well worth our time and effort.  I would like to continue this process with Board approval for 2020. 


Nathan Craig

Fire Chief