Seattle firefighters have been subjected to more than 40 violent attacks in the last four months, leaving firefighters concerned for their own safety and the impact on the public.
The president of Seattle’s firefighter’s union has called on the city council to take prompt action to protect first responders. City leaders responded with concern for firefighter safety.
Kenny Stuart, president of IAAF Local 27, aired the union’s concerns in a July 26 letter to the Seattle City Council, which was obtained by radio host Ari Hoffman. As evidence of the danger, Stuart cited a July 18 incident in which a firefighter responding to an encampment fire was struck by a large rock while putting out the blaze, and a June 3 attempted stabbing of first responders by a patient. When the fire department personnel retreated to their engine, the perpetrator climbed atop the vehicle until being detained.
Both attackers were detained but are now back in the community, according to the letter.