Radio Problems Cited In Deaths Of 19 Firefighters

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

Stay up-to-date with KAKE News:

Stay up-to-date with KAKE News:

Saturday, September 28, 2013

An investigation into the June deaths of 19 firefighters killed while battling an Arizona blaze has found a litany of problems stemming from inadequate radio communication.

The report by a team of fire experts cites improperly programmed radios, vague updates, and a 30-minute communication blackout just before the flames engulfed the men.

The report says at the moment the firefighters were killed, an air tanker carrying fire retardant was hovering overhead, waiting for an update about their location.

The findings were released Saturday.

The 20-member Granite Mountain Hotshots team arrived on June 30 to fight the fire outside Yarnell, about 80 miles northwest of Phoenix. About nine hours later, the crew radioed that they were trapped by flames and deploying their shelters. One crew member who was assigned as the lookout survived.


Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
powered by Disqus
KAKE TV 1500 N. West Street Wichita, KS 67203-1323 (316) 943-4221
Gray Television, Inc. - Copyright © 2002-2014 - Designed by Gray Digital Media - Powered by Clickability 225647131