Click on the question to show the answer…

Why do you send a fire engine along with an aid unit to a medical emergency? [+]

A lot of emergencies require more than the two people who respond with the aid unit to assist with a sick or injured patient and to facilitate the best medical care we have to offer.  Since firefighters also need to be available to respond to another emergency, the fire engine crew remains with their apparatus.  Fire engines also have essential equipment needed for a rescue, extrication, or stabilization of an incident.   An incident may require help from the police and/or the tech rescue team also.  The aid unit may provide transportation to an emergency room depending on the nature of the call.


Why do fire trucks go through town with lights & sirens sometimes and other times they seem to drive normal? [+]

Not all calls coming in to the fire department are classified as ”emergent”.  The fire department covers a wide range and all different types of service calls that need our assistance/response but are not true emergencies.  When a call for service comes into the dispatch center, the dispatcher will classify the “nature of the call” into either an emergency or non-emergency response, prior to alerting the police or fire department.  This is done to minimize the safety hazards associated with emergency responses of apparatus while at the same time assuring a prompt response. We will also turn off the lights and sirens at times when we are cancelled or it is no longer deemed necessary.


Why do firefighters break out windows and cut holes in roof during a fire? [+]

Ventilating super-heated smoke, poisons, and explosive gasses is paramount to the survival of a victim and the firefighters that go in to find the victim and extinguish the fire.  Ventilating improves visibility and overall safety of all involved.  It also can increase the intensity of the fire so it is precisely coordinated with the crews working on the fire scene.  Expediting the extinguishment of the fire with the coordinated efforts of ventilation and fire suppression greatly reduces the damage to the structure.


Why do you block so many traffic lanes during an auto accidents? [+]

During a motor vehicle accident or other incident involving roads or highways, the police department and fire department may block traffic lanes for the safety of our personnel and our patients. When we are on scene of an accident, the situation is always changing and progressing.  We might begin by closing the road or highway and as the situation lessens, we will adapt the closure to allow traffic to move through.   The very nature of our work puts firefighters and police officers in danger.  Knowing that, safety, of all involved is our top priority.  Over 25 firefighters are killed or injured each year while working at incidents on streets and highways.


Why am I not supposed to drive over a fire hose? [+]

Fire hose holds the water that is keeping the firefighters and any possible victims in the affected structure safe.  Fire hose is not constructed to be driven on.  Not only will it interrupt the flow of water by the heavy vehicle it could also break the hose making water flow permanently cease, endangering firefighters and citizens alike.  Any hose that is driven over, without protection, has to be taken out of service and tested.


Can you get my cat out of a tree? [+]

Enumclaw Fire Department is not able to rescue cats trapped in trees, however, we can point you in the right direction.   Canopy Cat Rescue is a professional cat rescue that specifies in rescuing cats stuck in trees!

Canopy Cat Rescue

Shaun Sears, Certified Arborist
Cell: 253-324-0524

Tom Otto, Certified Arborist
Cell: 360-239-8982

email: canopyconservation@gmail.com


For more information regarding domestic animals please contact Regional Animal Services of King County at 206-296-PETS (7387).


What if I smell gas in my home? [+]

If you smell a strong odor of gas-get out of the house immediately!!  Do not turn any electrical switches on or off, use a flashlight, or the telephone. An electric spark from any electrical or battery-powered device or even from static electricity could ignite a gas leak and cause an explosion. Call 911 from a neighbor’s house as soon as possible. Never try to locate the source of a gas leak yourself. Even if the smell of gas is faint, don’t take any chances. Leave the house and call 911.


What kind of fire extinguisher should I buy for my home? [+]

Homeowners should buy an extinguisher that can handle class A-B-C fires. This type of extinguisher is designed to extinguish fires that usually occur in homes including wood, paper, flammable liquids, and electrical fires. Fire extinguishers should be installed where the potential fire risk is greatest in the home. A Multi-Purpose A-B-C Dry Chemical fire extinguisher should be installed in the kitchen, laundry, workshop, garage and the top of the basement stairwell in a home. Extinguishers should never be more than 75 feet away from a Class A (ordinary combustibles) hazard, or further than 50 feet away from a Class B (flammable liquids) hazard.

If there is a fire and you choose to use an extinguisher to fight it, remember P.A.S.S.-Pull the pin, Aim at the base of the fire, Squeeze the trigger and Sweep back and forth until it is extinguished.  Only fight a fire that isn’t, yet, large and always have an exit at your back so you can escape if the fire does not go out.  If the fire does not go out, back out, close the door and call 911.


Why do firefighters work 24-48 hour shifts? [+]

The bottom line – firefighters working a 24-48 hour shift saves the public money. It is the most efficient way to staff the fire department, which is why it is done nationwide. No schedule for firefighters is more predominant.


Why do I see firefighters at stores while they are working? [+]

Firefighters work a 24 hour shift and must remain in the station or in a fire department vehicle, available for emergency response, at all times. Therefore, all of the firefighter’s meals are eaten while remaining ready to respond.  Firefighters, using their own money, are permitted to go to the store during the day to purchase items needed for these meals. Many other times Enumclaw Fire Department vehicles are at local businesses on official business such as inspections, performing training or education, or even answering questions or complaints. There are many public services performed by your fire department on a daily basis.

Finally, firefighters also routinely shop for needed fire department supplies and equipment.  Take advantage of this opportunity to interact with the firefighters and ask questions.  Please don’t be offended if they have to leave on a call, in a rush!


What other responsibilities do firefighters have other than fighting fires? [+]

Emergency calls represent only a narrow percent of the work in a typical day at Enumclaw Fire Department. The number of residential and commercial fires has steadily decreased over the years due to a variety of factors including improvements in construction, a greater public awareness of the risk factors leading to fires and a significant reduction in smoking, nationwide. Fires, however, are only some of the emergencies to which the fire department responds. Eighty percent (80%) + of the Fire Department’s emergency responses are, in fact, calls for medical aid including illnesses and injuries at home and work and injuries resulting from vehicle accidents. Other calls for emergency response involve hazardous materials responses, technical rescues, response to fire alarms, and other calls for public assistance. Firefighters also spend much of their time training for all types of emergency responses, maintaining equipment, teaching fire and life safety to the public and filling out the reports and paperwork associated with these activities.


What should I do when I see or hear an emergency vehicle coming towards me when I’m driving? [+]

When it is safe to do so, you should pull over to the right and stop until all emergency vehicles have safely passed. If you cannot safely maneuver to the right, simply stop and stay stopped so the vehicles can go around you safely.


My smoke detector is chirping, what does that mean? [+]

Most modern smoke detectors will chirp to alert you the batteries are low.  You should replace the batteries and test your smoke detector.  If the smoke detector still chirps after the batteries have been traded it might be a defective device and need to be replaced.  Smoke detectors can be purchased at any hardware or large commercial department store.  Do not leave your house unattended or go to sleep with out a working smoke detector!


How often should I change the batteries in my smoke detectors? [+]

Batteries, even in “hard wired” devices, should be replaced every 6 months. An easy reminder is to change your batteries in your smoke detector when you change the clocks each Fall and Spring.


Does the Fire Department fill or service fire extinguishers? [+]

Enumclaw Fire Department is not equipped to fill or service fire extinguishers.  We suggest looking online for a local businesses that can help you.


Can I ride along with the Fire Department? [+]

Citizens can request to ride along during regular business hours. For more information visit our “community” page or call 360-825-5544.


How much does an ambulance ride to the hospital cost? How about a Fire Truck responding to a fire? [+]

Medical transports to the hospital via Enumclaw Fire Department are billed per department adopted base rates and charges.  The exact cost would be determined by the type of response and mileage traveled during transportation of the patient.  Fire Engines and Rescue Trucks are supported by taxpayer revenues and a response is at “no charge” for these pieces of equipment.


How do I sign up for a First Aid or CPR class? [+]

Enumclaw Fire Department teaches quarterly classes on a first come, first serve basis.  Class space is limited.  Registration is online or, in person, at our fire administration office (2884 Griffin Ave Suite A, Enumclaw, WA 98022) is required.  No cash payments are accepted.  Please follow link for more information….CPR Classes.


Does the fire department take needles for disposal? [+]

Enumclaw Fire Department does not take needles for disposal.  King County residents can go to the King County website for more information on needle disposal.  Follow the link below for more info: King County Needle Disposal Info


Do I have to evacuate a building when the fire alarm goes off? [+]

Yes, the building has to be evacuated even if it is believed to be a false alarm.  Firefighters will clear the building for re-entry as soon as possible.  We have to assume it is a real fire alarm activation until we have performed a walk-through and deemed it a “false alarm”.


What can I do with my unwanted/unused Rx medications? [+]

We can not accept unwanted/unused medications at our station locations.  We do, however, have a website you can visit to find a local drop off location.  Some of the local drop off areas include Enumclaw, Buckley, Bonney Lake and Auburn.   Follow the link for more info:  www.takebackyourmeds.org



Helpful Links:

King County Fire Training Officers Association

King County Medic One

Washington State Association of Fire Chiefs

Washington State Fire Marshal

Washington State Council of Fire Fighters

Washington State Firefighters Association

Puget Sound Clean Air Agency

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

More Questions?
Click on the CONTACT tab at the top of the page and follow the prompts. Or call 360-825-5544.


No team bios are available.