One by one, firemen appealed to the lawmakers to consider an increase in the fire budget to help them out. Firemen stated that only four of them were the first responders at the fire at 526 Seward Street early Sunday. Later volunteers and crews from stations located in the valley showed up to provide mutual aid.
Two brothers, both from Mexico, “Wilfrido” Luis Román Olivarría Mora, 34, and Adrian de Jesus Olivarría Mora, 21, died in that blaze. Three others were injured and four firemen were taken to the hospital for heat exhaustion and smoke inhalation.
Firefighter Andrew Wheeler said the call volume in Juneau continues to rise while the number of firemen has not, "We need more staff. We will run 5,300 calls this year. Our staffing hasn't changed since we started the Fire Union. I think the Assembly understands and we look forward to watching how they react."
The Homer Fire Department responded to a small structure fire near Homer High School early Monday afternoon. Fire Chief Bob Painter described the makeshift structure in the woods behind the football field as a “lean-to” that appeared to be made by kids in the area.
The area was wet from recent rains, and the small blaze only spread to surrounding brush. Painter added that an accelerant was likely used to spark the fire.
Firefighters were on the scene for about 45 minutes, extinguishing the fire with hand tools and a single hose.
Painter notes there was no chance of the fire spreading, but he says the situation was still dangerous and is something parents should be aware of. The fire department isn’t conducting a formal investigation, but Painter says it will talk to area residents about the incident.
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