Yarnell Hill Fire Chapter X

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Please begin Chapter X of the Yarnell Hill Fire discussion here. Once again, do not include more than one link in your comment in order to avoid the spam folder.

Please refrain from personal attacks. Stay focused on what is known and what is not known.

Thank you, John

Chapter I, Chapter II, Chapter II supplement, Chapter III, Chapter IV, Chapter V, Chapter VI, Chapter VII and Chapter VIII and Chapter IX.

© Copyright 2014 John Dougherty, All rights Reserved. Written For: Investigative MEDIA

Comments

  1. joy says

    Tue, Dec 16, 2014 at 10:12 AM
    Ms. Collura –

    Please find the attached letter regarding your public records request.

    Thank you

    Beth Nehring

    Beth Nehring
    Human Resources Representative
    Administrative Assistant
    Arizona State Forestry Division
    1110 West Washington, Suite 100
    Phoenix, AZ 85007
    ( 602-771-1400 | 7 602-771-1421 fax
    *bethnehring@azsf.gov
    http://www.azsf.az.gov
    The envelope is marked Dec 16 2014 8pm and Sunday I will post photo of envelope as just PROOF of the FOIA request and this is the kind of stuff IF A PERSON MAKES CLAIMS they can PROVE by doing this…gives it clarity..keeps it transparent…and shows who was first since some care to be first…not me…I am so “cracker” mad at this point how YCSO did me yesterday and this whole horse shit with Chief Ben Palm. I will add on IM when I get photos via dropbox and tell the account but I am in a cracker mad mode this week that anything further I don’t care to help—I am asking locals as I hike to PLEASE show their photos and I am usually very kind in tone but not so kind this week…maybe if people here locally realize I tried the NICE way and this will make 2 Christmas these kids DO NOT have a dad and they could really HELP…Man, I am not a person you want to know nowadays…in a very P’d off mood.
    I cannot believe how many people CHOOSE to hold on to their accounts when they can help

  2. WantsToKnowTheTruth says

    **
    ** VOICES IN THE STATIC – 2
    **
    ** SOMEONE APPEARS TO BE REPORTING ABOUT
    ** GRANITE MOUNTAIN IN VIDEO M2U00264

    This is a followup to the other recent ‘Voices in the static’ posting below.

    THIS one is that loud HUM followed by that ‘voice in the static’ heard in Aaron Hulburd’s video M2U00264.

    This is the transmission that took place just prior to the first MAYDAY call from Jesse Steed where both KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell and Aaron Hulburd say ( during the transmission ) that they are sure it is coming from either Eric Marsh or Jesse Steed.

    Aaron Hulburd says ( during the transmission ): “That’s gotta be… Eric or Jesse.”

    Then KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell immediately replies with: “That’s gotta be them, yea.”

    That does NOT appear to be the case.

    I’m not hearing a voice match for either Marsh or Steed. Not really…

    …but the transmission DOES contain a conversation ( coming from SOMEONE? Brian Frisby? ) first about them ( Granite Mountain ) not needing to do something because they didn’t finish the work they were doing… and then about how they were told to ‘pick it up and monitor the weather’.

    What is actually being said inside that static appears to be this…

    ——————————————————————————-
    Because they didn’t need to. They didn’t complete the work that..
    uh… they was doin’ this morning… then they got directed to pick
    it up and monitor the weather.
    ——————————————————————————-

    It is not clear WHO this person was talking TO ( since the radio only locked onto the channel in mid-conversation ).. but if I had to venture a ‘good guess’ who the one who is reporting to someone about Granite Mountain is… I would say it’s a very close VOICE MATCH for Blue Ridge SUP Brian Frisby.

    This HUM and STATIC ( with conversation in it ) comes just after SPGS1 Gary Cordes has instructed TFLD2(t) Tyson Esquibel to send at least one Engine to the Boulder Springs Ranch… and to tell that ‘Engine’ to get with Granite Mountain there and make sure they get out safely.

    SPGS1 Gary Cordes was SURE ( circa 1635 ) that they were either ALREADY there at the Boulder Springs Ranch… or just about to ARRIVE there.

    Before I post the link to the new LOOP on this particular radio transmission… here is the transcript that covers the full timeframe as the LOOP itself from Hulburd’s M2U00264 video…

    From Aaron Hulburd’s Helmet-Cam video clip M2U0064
    ————————————————————————
    VIDEO M2U00264 STARTS AT 1633.23 ( 4:33.23 PM )

    +2:29 ( 1635.51 / 4:35.51 PM )
    (Very loud HUM followed by STATIC with a voice in it reporting to someone )

    +2:31 ( 1635.54 / 4:35.54 PM )
    ( VOICE in the STATIC – Speaker still Unknown at this time):

    Because they didn’t need to. They didn’t complete the work that..
    uh… they was doin’ this morning… then they got directed to pick
    it up and monitor the weather.

    +2:36 ( 1635.59 / 4:35.59 PM )
    (Foreground: Aaron Hulburd): That’s gotta be… Eric or Jesse.

    +2:37 ( 1636.00 / 4:36.00 PM )
    (Foreground: KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell): That’s gotta be them, yea.

    +2:41 ( 1636.04 / 4:36.04 PM )
    (Foreground: More COUGHING. Sounds like KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell coughing. )
    —————————————————————————-

    ** THE AUDIO LOOP…

    This PUBLIC excerpt from Aaron Hulburd video M2U00264 LOOPS 4 times on just this particular ‘static filled transmission’ and it matches the transcript above.

    It ENDS with the COUGHING and then LOOPS ( 4 times ) again back to the HUM and then the STATIC filled transmission…

    http://youtu.be/EgXir-JV3rw

    I have no idea what QUESTION the person who is speaking ( Frisby? ) was answering when he says “Because they didn’t need to”… but my guess would be that someone had asked why they didn’t stay up on the ridge.

    Remember… this transmission comes just a few moments after the YARNELL-GAMBLE video where Eric Marsh is CLEARLY heard reporting that Granite Mountain is “Comin’ from the heel of the fire”. Someone might have just heard that and they are now asking the person who is heard speaking in this transmission “Why didn’t they stay on the ridge?”, or something to that effect.

    The person answers with “Because they didn’t need to” ( stay on the ridge ) and then explains that it’s because they hadn’t finished their work and were told to ‘pick it up’.

    More later.

    • Marti Reed says

      Thanks for doing this. I’m seriously not good at this, but I woke up too early, so sitting here (while observing interesting complex inter-cat power dynamics) and listening to this over and over.

      I think when Aaron says, “That’s gotta be… Eric or Jesse,” he’s referring to the “THEY” in the transmission, “Because they didn’t need to. They didn’t complete the work that..
      uh… they was doin’ this morning… then they got directed to pick it up and monitor the weather,” and not the SENDER of the transmission.

      I really don’t think any of the Prescotteers would have mistaken that voice for either Marsh or Steed.

      I find this interesting: “then they got directed to pick it up and monitor the weather.”

      I don’t know what “got directed to pick it up” means. Or by whom. But Abel seems to have been most involved in talking with Eric regarding watching the weather.

      I just don’t know the voices all that well. But the voice that is saying that sounds more like Cordes than Frisby to me. Especially given how their voices sound in those segments when you can hear them communicating more clearly. Cordes’ voice has a lower pitch than Frisby’s. And the same pitch as I’m hearing in this communication.

      Thanks also for the reminder of “where” this is in relationship to the Gamble video. Definitely could be a connection.

      Sorry about being “sparse” these days. Dealing with stuff regarding my 93-year-old mom, big time.

      • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

        Reply to Marti Reed post on December 16, 2014 at 6:38 am

        >> Marti said…
        >>
        >> I think when Aaron says, “That’s gotta be… Eric or Jesse,” he’s
        >> referring to the “THEY” in the transmission, “Because they didn’t
        >> need to. They didn’t complete the work that.. uh… they was doin’
        >> this morning… then they got directed to pick it up and monitor
        >> the weather,” and not the SENDER of the transmission.

        Good point. You might be exactly right.

        Sure would be nice if someone had INTERVIEWED these guys, eh?

        Actually… I believe they WERE interviewed ( it’s hard to imagine they would NOT have been ) but that those notes or transcripts have always been part of what is being withheld from FOIA requests.

        >> Marti also said…
        >>
        >> I really don’t think any of the Prescotteers would have mistaken
        >> that voice for either Marsh or Steed.

        Agree. It’s hard to tell, though, how much clearer even THEY ( Hulburd and Yowell ) could have heard the transmission. It really was poor quality… even for them.

        >> Marti also said…
        >>
        >> I find this interesting: “then they got directed to pick it up
        >> and monitor the weather.”
        >>
        >> I don’t know what “got directed to pick it up” means.

        I believe that just means ‘TOOLS UP’. Someone is relaying to someone else that they really were TOLD to ‘stop working’. Hence… ‘pick it up’.

        There is also a chance that phrase could be ‘pack it up’… but I listened very, very carefully there and I’m almost sure it is ‘pick it up’… which still makes sense given the context of the rest of that transmission.

        >> Marti also wrote…
        >>
        >> Or by whom. But Abel seems to have been most involved in
        >> talking with Eric regarding watching the weather.

        I thought about this a lot. I do NOT believe the speaker was Todd Abel here. Doesn’t really sound like him and I think the ‘context’ also proves it wasn’t him.

        I believe the ‘they got told to pick it up’ is actually referring to that radio conversation between Abel and Marsh that was partially captured in the Caldwell video.

        In other words… whoever is reporting to someone in THIS transmission might be referring to what THEY heard OPS1 Todd Abel telling DIVSA Marsh earlier…

        1. Keep ME informed.
        2. Hunker and be safe.
        3. We’ll get some Air Support down there ASAP.

        The person talking in the new transmission could be referring to the ‘Hunker and be safe’ directive from OPS1 Todd Abel as the ‘pick it up and monitor the weather’ moment.

        >> Marti also said…
        >>
        >> I just don’t know the voices all that well. But the voice that is
        >> saying that sounds more like Cordes than Frisby to me.
        >> Especially given how their voices sound in those segments
        >> when you can hear them communicating more clearly. Cordes’
        >> voice has a lower pitch than Frisby’s. And the same pitch as I’m
        >> hearing in this communication.

        You may be exactly right.

        The more I think about it… it’s actually doubtful this could have been Frisby because of the actual MOMENT when this transmission takes place.

        Remember… Frisby and Brown are just about 100 yards WEST of Hulburd at this moment and they are hauling ass OUT of the Youth Camp area in the Polaris Ranger and ‘bringing up the rear’. They ( Frisby and Brown ) are just moments away from pulling up to Hulburd, Clawson and Yowell right there where they are standing in the Shrine parking lot.

        I don’t who was DRIVING the Polaris Ranger at that moment… but if it was Frisby himself then he really couldn’t have been the one making this transmission at this moment in time. Well… I suppose it’s possible… but not really likely.

        SPGS1 Gary Cordes WOULD be the more likely candidate for this transmission… and as far as WHO he was ‘reporting’ to… I think the most likely candidate might be OPS2 Paul Musser.

        Also remember… this is just SECONDS after we have already heard SPGS1 Gary Cordes telling TFLD2(t) Tyson Esquibel to arrange for that Engine to go and ‘get’ Granite Mountain at the Boulder Springs Ranch.

        Here is what we might really be hearing at this point…

        1) Cordes tells Esquibel to arrange for GM to be ‘picked’ up’ at BSR.

        2) OPS2 Paul Musser HEARS this directive to Esquibel and that doesn’t match his mental picture of where GM really is. Musser still thinks they are ‘committed to the ridge’ as they told him earlier.

        3) So Musser immediately calls Cordes to get some ‘clarification’.

        4) Musser asks Cordes something like… “Hey Gary… I heard what you just told Esquibel to do. What is Granite doing at the Boulder Springs Ranch? Why didn’t they just stay up on the ridge?”

        5) Cordes answers…

        ——————————————————————————-
        Because they didn’t need to. They didn’t complete the work that..
        uh… they was doin’ this morning… then they got directed to pick
        it up and monitor the weather.
        ——————————————————————————-

        • The Truth Will Always Remain Elusive says

          “then they got directed to pick it up”

          could also mean ‘pick-up the pace’, IF they were already moving.

          • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

            I wish they had ( picked up the pace ). It is still astounding that regardless of why 2 men decided to lead 17 others out of a safe area and into a ‘risky’ situation that ( once the decision was actually made ) they weren’t doing ‘double-time’ the whole way.
            It might have made all the difference that afternoon.

    • FIRE20+ says

      WTKTT said:
      –Aaron Hulburd says ( during the transmission ): “That’s gotta be… Eric or Jesse.”

      Then KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell immediately replies with: “That’s gotta be them, yea.”

      I went and watched/listened to this again to reconfirm what I believe is going on here. I disagree that Aaron said “That’s gotta be..Eric or Jesse” I hear “That’s gotta be Blue Ridge”. AND, they’re watching for the last rig out of Shrine, which is Frisby/Blue Ridge then they show on the razor. And as far as resources like the Prescott guys that are evacuating other resources, they probably aren’t listening for every last transmission on the radio and speculating who it is, just saying. As far as your theory of Musser being the one alerted to GM’s position and questioning Cordes, wasn’t he standing there by the Prescott guys in this video? Didn’t he report the Skull Valley Wx to the Prescott guys?

      As far as the background radio traffic, I agree with Marti it’s Cordes. He was doing all the talking as OH during that recording, at the end you can hear him talking to Abel about starting to lose structures too. Also remember that transmissions that are clear are probably decent line of sight, and the ones the Prescott guys aren’t really picking up, not so good line of sight down by the Shrine. Like Abel’s transmission, he was N and was coming across scratchy and broken.

      As far as the “then they got directed to (pick it up) (pack it up), whatever, somebody directed them to do something. I’m not 100% sure of exactly what I hear here. Abel’s the “hunker and be safe and I’ll get you air support down there asap” comment, that’s the closest direction we have and it sounds right on.

      • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

        Reply to FIRE20+ post on December 16, 2014 at 10:40 am

        FIRE20+… Thanks for reviewing this.

        Once again… great observations on your part.

        >> FIRE20+ said…
        >>
        >> I went and watched/listened to this again to reconfirm what
        >> I believe is going on here. I disagree that Aaron said
        >> “That’s gotta be..Eric or Jesse” I hear “That’s gotta be Blue Ridge”.
        >> AND, they’re watching for the last rig out of Shrine, which
        >> is Frisby/Blue Ridge then they show on the razor.

        Yes. Could be. At the moment they are saying these things, Tyson Esquibel has just passed the camera in that long yellow/white GLENDALE pickup truck… but the pair of headlights now approaching the Shrine parking lot pretty much has to be the Blue Ridge Polaris Ranger about to reach their location.

        So yea… Yowell and Hulburd might have been focused on those approaching headlights and agreeing “That’s gotta be them”.

        Yowell and Hulburd had already heard Frisby say ( at the start of this same video ) that they would be the ‘last ones out’.

        If anyone ever gets a chance to actually interview “The 3 Prescotteers” ( or we ever see the transcripts of interviews they HAVE already given )… maybe what they were referring to there will become crystal clear.

        >> FIRE20+ also said…
        >>
        >> As far as your theory of Musser being the one alerted to GM’s
        >> position and questioning Cordes, wasn’t he standing there by
        >> the Prescott guys in this video? Didn’t he report the Skull
        >> Valley Wx to the Prescott guys?

        Yes. Musser was still right there in the vicinity…
        but SPGS1 Gary Cordes was NOT there.

        So if Musser really wanted to know why Cordes just told Esquibel to send an Engine to BSR to ‘get with Granite Mountain’ there… he could still have been the one that called from right there in the Shrine parking lot asking Cordes “Why didn’t they stay up on the ridge?”

        >> FIRE20+ also said…
        >>
        >> As far as the background radio traffic, I agree with Marti it’s Cordes.

        I went back and did more ‘voice comparison’ and I’m going to totally withdraw my own ‘guess’ that it might have been Frisby. Marti is right. Different tonal placement in the voice and it really pretty much has to be SPGS1 Gary Cordes speaking there.

        >> FIRE20+ also said…
        >>
        >> As far as the “then they got directed to (pick it up) (pack it up),
        >> whatever, somebody directed them to do something. I’m not
        >> 100% sure of exactly what I hear here. Abel’s the “hunker and
        >> be safe and I’ll get you air support down there asap” comment,
        >> that’s the closest direction we have and it sounds right on.

        Well… whether it was Musser who ‘asked the question’ that (apparently) SPGS1 Gary Cordes was ‘answering’ there… the content of his response indicates ( just like Marsh’s response to someone in the YARNELL-GAMBLE video ) that the caller had asked a QUESTION and it was related to Granite Mountain.

        In the case of the YARNELL-GAMBLE video… it must have bee a query about where GM was and what was taking them so long to get somewhere. Marsh’s response indicated to the caller that they were “coming from the heel of the fire” and that’s why they hadn’t arrived in town yet.

        In the case of this transmission… whoever asked the question was (apparently) getting an ‘explanation’ ( from Cordes? ) as to why they didn’t ‘stay up on the ridge’.

        If that really is SPGS1 Gary Cordes making this ‘report’ at this moment in time about what went on earlier with Granite Mountain, and why they were no longer ‘on the ridge’ and were currently “coming from the heel of the fire”…

        …then that is just more proof positive that SPGS1 Gary Cordes heard pretty much ALL of the radio traffic concerning Granite Mountain that afternoon… including that conversation Marsh had with OPS1 Todd Abel about ‘the weather’ that resulted in Abel telling Marsh to “Hunker and be safe”.

        So something really isn’t ‘matching’ with regards to how much SPGS1 Gary Cordes really did KNOW about Granite’s situation and activities leading up to the deployment… and what Cordes was choosing to share in his ADOSH interview.

        Apparently… Cordes knew enough about what was going on with them to share this ‘report’ with someone over the radio just minutes before the first MAYDAY… but then makes no mention to ADOSH of having had this kind of knowledge.

        Something not quite right there.

  3. Bob Powers says

    For the record and the Ten Standard orders

    3 Crews I worked on and I am Familiar with

    Cilaho Hot Shots Angeles NF 34 years disbanded lack of funds.
    Never deployed Fire Shelters
    Oak Grove Hot Shots Angeles NF 28 years disbanded lack of funds
    Never deployed Fire Shelters.
    Sawtooth Hot Shots Sawtooth NF 50 Years and still active
    Never deployed Fire Shelters
    Many other crews can attest to the same thing and they all never experienced a burn over out side a safety Zone
    That is the statistics that I stand on for the safety of the 10 standard orders. We lived by them 50 years ago and they are still valid and the rules to day.
    That is my evidence I don’t believe I need any thing else.

    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

      The ‘Central Arizona Wildland Response Team’ ( CAWRT ) seems to AGREE with you.

      Here is their ‘official’ Facebook page…

      https://www.facebook.com/pages/Central-Arizona-Wildland-Response-Team-CAWRT/201969799880168

      Scroll down and look at what was posted there on June 30, 2014, on the day of the one year anniversary of the Yarnell Fire where ( according to Arizona Forestry’s official SAIT investigation ) ‘No one did anything wrong” and there were (supposedly) no LCES or 10+18 rule violations…

      ———————————————————–——
      Central Arizona Wildland Response Team (CAWRT)

      June 30 · Edited

      As we are sure most of you have, please put the families and loved one of the Granite Mountain Hotshots in your thoughts and prayers.

      At this time last year, several CAWRT crews were a part of the firefighting efforts at Yarnell Hill and still remember the tragedy as if it was yesterday. Take the time to share with your crews the new LCANS procedures as well as reviewing the 10 and 18 and LCES.
      ————————–———————————————

      So according to the CAWRT… even though (supposedly) “no one did anything wrong” a year ago… this public post of ‘remembrance’ is ALSO asking their followers to PLEASE make SURE they ALL take the time to review LCANS, 10+18 and LCES…

      L = Lookouts
      C = Communications
      E = Escape Routes
      S = Safety Zones

      The life you save might be your own.

      • Bob Powers says

        First a correction in spelling Chilao Hot Shots. from above.

        For some reason Elizabeth and her small cadre of fire fighters seem to want to dis credit and attack the 10 Standard orders.

        To my knowledge and all my checking they are still as strong as they ever were and still referred to and used in training as you have shown above.

        Some say they are used to condemn Fire Fighters or they are old and Hill Billy and not for modern day Fire Fighters, or they are vague.

        I am saying spend more time researching them studying them and using them and you will find the real direction and meaning in each one and its attachment to the whole. They will serve you well as they did thousands before you.

        Some have said you can not do your job and follow them sorry they are wrong.

        They are called ORDERS for a reason

        • Elizabeth says

          Bob, I do not discredit the 10 Standard Orders. All I said is that, as confirmed by Kenny Jordan’s deployment investigation (done by some fellow who is apparently well-known and respected in the WFF world), it is possible to follow the 10 Standard Orders and comport with LCES and STILL end up in a fire shelter or in a near-miss.
          That was the only point that I was making.
          I am disappointed that you are misquoting me or attributing things to me that I did not say! I am not surprised, mind you, but I am disappointed. I am stunned that John Dougherty ever used you as an expert source given your poor recall on facts, with all due respect.

            • Elizabeth says

              Bob, yes it is. If you doubt me, check with the investigator who reviewed Kenny Jordan’s shelter deployment.
              Or I suggest you touch base with Kenny Jordan before you try to argue with me or with what Kenny himself said in his shelter deployment video.

              • Bob Powers says

                Bottom line he stayed to long where he was lost the time to get to the SZ and got trapped on the rock.
                Same as no SZ no trimming to use escape route actually ended up in a deployment site that was marginal and managed to survive. So no he did not follow all the 10 Standard orders or he would not have been where he was. He chose not to leave and move to the SZ Like I said in his statement he waited to long to leave and lost the opportunity. He knew what he was suppose to do he chose not to and lost his ability to escape. That’s what I read don’t know what you
                think is safe he was very unsafe but justified it to make sure his crew was safe. So no I don’t completely agree with the investigator. Jordan lost his escape route because he waited to long to leave his lookout spot.
                Again He Deployed and did not Burn or Die.
                Did he have a Escape Route And A Safety Zone YES did he use it NO. In essence he failed to follow Order #4.
                I am not chasing these Rabbits with you any more.
                GM Failed to follow any of the rules and Died in the process.

  4. Bob Powers@magiclink.com says

    A little history on 3 Hot Shot crews that I served on.

    Chilao Angeles NF–34 years no Deployments ever. disbanded due to funding

    Oak Grove Hot Shots Angeles NF 28 years no deployments disbanded due to funding

    Sawtooth Hot Shots Sawtooth NF 50 years and still active no deployments ever.

    That is 3 crews I can say never have used a Fire shelter. And I can say personally they all lived and preached the Ten Standard Orders. They followed them or still are that is a testament to Safety

    There are many other crews that can attest to the same thing. I stand on the facts and they are there for those that need to know.

    They are as good today as 50 years ago and Fire Fighters are safer because of them. With statistics like that prove me wrong.

  5. The Truth Will Always Remain Elusive says

    Bob,

    Ulterior Motives.

    It’s all about dilute, divert, and destroy the message/discussion.

    Don’t let her push your buttons.

  6. Robert the Second says

    WTKTT,

    Remember back many IM Chapters ago, when we discussed the Federal Government’s SAIT protocol of completing a Management Evaluation Report (MER) for use only by upper management, not to be released to the public? Well the link below is for the MER for the fatal 2001 Thirty Mile Fire on the Okanogan NF, in central Washington, near Winthrop

    On July 10, 2001, the second day of the Thirty Mile Fire, several WFF left their “lunch spot,” were then cut off by the advancing fire, and six (6) WFF deployed fire shelters above a road in rocks and rock scree and four (4) of the six WFF died. Ten others, including two civilians safely deployed on the road way below and survived without injuries. Two of the civilians sheltered with one of the WFF, making a total of three people in one fire shelter.

    http://www.fireleadership.gov/toolbox/staffride/downloads/lsr4/lsr4_management_eval_rpt.pdf

    The Recommendations on page 16) revealed the following:

    “Situational Awareness, Assessment, and Transition”

    “Ensure that fire program managers, fire-line supervisors, and firefighters have situational
    awareness, assessment, and decision-making abilities necessary to successfully and safely
    transition command from initial attack to extended attack on incidents.”

    “Ensure that fire program managers and incident commanders have situational awareness,
    assessment, and decision-making abilities necessary to react to significant changes in fire
    danger thresholds.”

    Sound familiar? This was clearly available and read by many, if not most, of those in the field and those on IMT’s, after the SAIR and MER were released, and should have been under consideration prior to 30 June 2013. Yet it was instead like Ground Hog Day on 30 June 2013.

    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

      Reply to Robert the Second (RTS) post on December 15, 2014 at 4:19 pm

      >> RTS said…
      >>
      >> WTKTT,
      >> Remember back many IM Chapters ago, when we discussed the
      >> Federal Government’s SAIT protocol of completing a Management
      >> Evaluation Report (MER) for use only by upper management, not
      >> to be released to the public?

      Yes. I also remember as part of that discussion the TOTAL FAILURE on the part of Jim Karels and Mike Dudley to do anything of the kind, even though that’s what they were being PAID to do by the State of Arizona taxpayers.

      This has been posted before… but just in case anyone is new to the discussion, here is the exact ‘Transfer of Authority’ document that was SIGNED by both Jim Karels and Mike Dudley, and was then sent to Arizona Governor Jan Brewer by Arizona State Forester Scott Hunter.

      Notice where it says EXACTLY which DOCUMENTS were *supposed* to be produced… and WHAT those documents were supposed to accomplish…

      From the actual SAIR document… PDF page 118
      —————————————————————————
      Appendix G: Delegation of Authority

      To: Janice K. Brewer – Governor of Arizona

      From: Scott Hunt – Arizona State Forester

      Arizona State Forestry Division
      Office of the State Forester
      1110 W. Washington St., Suite 100
      Phonenix, AZ 85007
      (602) 771-1400

      Serious Accident Investigation Team – Delegation of Authority

      On the afternoon of June 30, 2013, nineteen members of the Granite Mountain Type 1 Hotshot Crew from Prescott, Arizona were killed while fighting the Yarnell Hill Fire.

      As the State Forester of Arizona, I authorize Jim Karel’s Serious Accident Investigation Team to conduct the accident review of the Yarnell Hill Fire.

      This delegation is to perform the serious accident review of the Yarnell Hill Fire with the final objective of providing a FACTUAL and MANAGEMENT report for ACCIDENT PREVENTION.

      Your duties include but are not limited to:

      7: Provide the following formal briefings/reports:

      a. Expanded Report ( 72 Hours ).
      b. Factual AND Management Report.

      Signed by…

      Scott Hunt – 7-3-13
      Jim Karels, Team Leader, SAIT – 7-3-13
      Mike Dudley, Deputy Team Leader, SAIT – 7-3-13
      ————————————————————————-

      So the actual ‘Delegation of Authority’ from Arizona Forestry to the newly assembled SAIT team was REQUIRING both a FACTUAL and a MANAGEMENT report… and the end goal for BOTH documents was the prevention of future ( similar ) accidents.

      Period. End of story.

      Mike Dudley and Jim Karels then proceeded to just IGNORE all that, and just do whatever the hell THEY wanted to do.

      They actually had the SAND to ‘include’ this letter in the only document they even bothered to produce.

      Appendix ‘G’ of their own (worthless) ‘Special Accident Investigation Report’ ( SAIR ), whic

      That (expensive) publication was in no way any kind of real ‘Accident Investigation’, nor was there anything ‘Special’ about it… and it really even wasn’t much of a ‘Report’.

      So TOTAL FAIL on pretty much each letter of the acronym.

      And there was NO (detailed) MANAGEMENT report, as they were contracted by Arizona Forestry to also produce.

      Zero. Zip. Nada.

      I still think both Mike Dudley and Jim Karels need to return whatever money they left the State of Arizona with back to the taxpayers of Arizona.

      They didn’t do what they were CONTRACTED to do.

      >> RTS also said…
      >>
      >> Well the link below is for the MER for the fatal 2001 Thirty Mile Fire
      >> on the Okanogan NF, in central Washington, near Winthrop
      >>
      >> ( Insert link and detail paragraph from above )
      >>
      >> The Recommendations on page 16) revealed the following:
      >>
      >> “Situational Awareness, Assessment, and Transition”
      >>
      >> “Ensure that fire program managers, fire-line supervisors, and firefighters
      >> have situational awareness, assessment, and decision-making abilities
      >> necessary to successfully and safely transition command from initial
      >> attack to extended attack on incidents.”

      Total FAIL on June 30, 2013, in Yarnell, Arizona.

      >> “Ensure that fire program managers and incident commanders have
      >> situational awareness, assessment, and decision-making abilities
      >> necessary to react to significant changes in fire danger thresholds.”

      Total FAIL on June 30, 2013, in Yarnell, Arizona.

      Gary Cordes told ADOSH at least FOUR times…

      “The fire just outperformed our expectations”.

      No shit, Sherlock.

      Keyword: Expectations.

      If the people working that fire didn’t have enough knowledge, or training, or experience to have the RIGHT expectations that day… then they should NOT have even BEEN there picking up paychecks from the taxpayers of Arizona.

      The taxpayers in Yarnell ( and in ALL of Arizona ) deserved BETTER.

      >> RTS also said…
      >>
      >> Sound familiar?

      Yep. That’s why Yarnell is ( and continues to be ) such a ‘missed opportunity’ for both Arizona Forestry and the US Forestry Service. It is PROOF that the directives and
      conclusions that have ALREADY been paid for with other lives are NOT being
      regularly implemented or enforced at both the State and Federal Forestry levels.

      >> RTS also said…
      >>
      >> This was clearly available and read by many, if not most, of those in the
      >> field and those on IMT’s, after the SAIR and MER were released, and
      >> should have been under consideration prior to 30 June 2013.
      >> Yet it was instead like Ground Hog Day on 30 June 2013.

      When small animals won’t come out of their holes… and prefer to just stay ‘underground’ and not listen to anyone OR come out and see the light of day… the only way to GET them to come out is to FORCE them to.

      The Yarnell Hill Fire is actually about much, much more than just the Yarnell Hill Fire.

      I think the ENTIRE Forestry Program ( both State and FED ) is ripe for a
      complete, serious, independent REVIEW.

      Management… Hiring Practices… Training programs… Accident Investigations… yada, yada.

      Soup to Nuts… before more people get killed.

  7. Sonny says

    Joy and I attended the Yarnell Fire Board Group and are just back. It seems they were more intent on enforcing something that can not be legally enforced concerning state trespass laws than they are creating defensible space, looking at concerns regarding the loss of 40 lives since the fire and finding out what the circumstances really were that led up to the 19 GMHS deaths.

    A number of Joy’s friends showed up to witness in case we got arrested–it did not happen. Even her husband was there to make bond if needed. The young fire chief stated he was only trying to comply with orders from upstairs, but he did not know that Joy had photographed many people that were on those state lands without legal passes, therefore breaking the law. Ignorance of the law is no excuse these days even though there are 64000 and more on the books. But boys enforcing the law need to get them all down so they can deliver the facts to us hikers. Well it turns out Joy educated many of those that she had in the photo when they later wanted to hike with us–almost to a person they did not know that they had to have a pass to walk on their own public lands. Yes a $15 senior pass or $20 regular pass will get you on with us–we want to keep you out of jail and the exorbitant fine for that awful crime of walking on state or federal lands without giving the mordida (little bite) as they call it in Mexico. Some think it is akin to a robber holding a gun on you so you can walk out there. The state will do that for you as well if you are not happy with their fee.

    I did get in a thing about the 40 dying and so first did Joy. I was able to let the board know that 83%of that LC95A slurry fire retardant is ammonia nitrate that gives off a lung tissue killing gas and that 8% is chemicals that we have yet to know due to trade secret. I suggested that since they should have the clout to gain this information, and seeing that they are a fire board concerned with fire things including firemen’s health they ought to find out. Also factor in 40 deaths now since the fire in this little community, would it not be a good idea to contact EPA or the health bureaus to investigate the possible escalation in deaths to older citizens. One lady was very interested on the board and did write this down. Maybe it will help somebody–seeing the 6 page information report on LC95A states it has never been tested on animals or humans as to its effect on health. They just assume it is good stuff and the gasses and chemicals emitted by the drops are benign. Sounds like the same shit we heard when i was a uranium miner–low grade uranium does no harm–yet you can get a consolation prize for being a uranium miner for over 4 quarters of a hundred and fifty grand. It takes one of specific cancers, COPD, and other diseases to get it and up to ten years for approval so hopefully you can hang on against the disease until you get it. Most haven’t and those old miners i knew were mostly gone long ago from one cancer or another. Maybe these firemen need to know now what they breath, so they can have some chance of future retribution–if indeed as i believe they are–breathing dangerous chemicals.

    Now back to the fire–Joy did post some more new photos a few days ago. What I saw looked like would be more help in resolving things.

    The Discovery Channel guy did contact Joy just before we left–wanted her to report back on how it went at the fire board. Well I did not see much excitement there, but can bet they will lay off Joy after she laid out about six pages of maps, regulations and facts about how the law must be followed not only by us but by those that exercise the law as well.

    It is amazing all this to me–I do admire you people here and how well you have been exposing these bumblers of the Yarnell fire.

    I have to admit I did ask the FBI to step in and had presented a pretty good argument (at least in my own opinion) as to why they should. It took a long email to the Phoenix office–and one of the things i covered is the obvious cover up and omission of such things as that Bambi and Copter able to stop the fire or at least slow it for oncoming fire fighters that was told by the Honcho to stay put. Such things seem strange to me–also that a photo of two ATV’s on the mountain right at the fire on Friday is in the hands of certain individuals–yet no investigator has ever bothered to contact those people with the photo or even ask who it is that has those photo’s.

    Did Joy’s discovery of that Bambi/copter photo and the fact that certain firemen on the job hear on radio that bosses told the copter pilots to stand down on Saturday morning piss someone off? Marti and Wants to Know the Truth dissected those photos as to what they were as well as time and date and location. The idea is that someone does not want the truth and nothing but the truth out and in my way of thinking only outside investigators will be able to get closure and satisfaction to the loved ones. There are lots of children out there without fathers now, mothers and dads without their sons. There are plenty of friends saddened by this tragedy So no matter how lightly those dissenters to outside investigators might be, this investigation will go on and no amount of harassment or intimidation will stop those of us who whittle at the veil of whitewash we have been fed.

  8. Elizabeth says

    Fred Schoeffler, as part of his efforts to try to needlessly (or at least prematurely) besmirch the 19 dead Granite Mountain Hotshots, stated below that: “You can find NO investigation report and/or review anywhere, where a WFF followed all The WFF Rules and ended up burned, in a fire shelter, or a fatality.”

    In response, I offer the following: Not true, Fred (at least according to what Kenny Jordan states in his Big Creek Fire deployment video)! 😉

    According to former Sierra Hotshots Superintendent Ken Jordan’s video interview about his deployment on the Big Creek fire, the person who did the review of Kenny’s shelter deployment found that Kenny was in compliance with the 10 Standard Orders. Go back and listen to the video – at roughly 8 minutes and 47-ish seconds into the video, Kenny says that the guy who did the investigation/review (who apparently was very well-regarded in the WFF world) ultimately concluded that Kenny did not violate the 10 Standard Orders. Yet Kenny ended up in a fire shelter and almost died nonetheless….

    It happens. The 10 Standard Orders and LCES sometimes prove insufficient, such that you can end up in a bad situation even when it seems that you honestly, legitimately complied with them in a way that was reasonable at the time.

    • Bob Powers says

      First Kenny ADMITTED he stayed to LONG to make sure his crew got out. he was stuck on a rock. Fine Hair here as to a violation of the 10 SO’s He personally did not have a escape route and his SZ was the rock not a good choice but the only place for a lookout.

      Second he used his shelter and he got lucky and survived in not the best location.
      What did RTS say?????

      Where a FF ended up BURNED or a Fatality.

      THE 10 STANDARD ORDERS ARE ALWAYS SUFFICENT ALONG WITH LCES.

      HEY HAVE PROVEN TIME AND TIME AGAIN WITH 10’S OF THOUSANDS OF LIVES BEING SAVED BY THERE USE.

      ELIZABETH— WITH NO EXPERIANCE IN WILD LAND FIRE FIGHTING YOU HAVE NO CLUE AND NEVER HAVE.

      Again for your information—Granit Mountain Never used the 10 and 18 or LCES in their move off the mountain. THERE IS NO NEEDLESLY BESMIRCHING OF THE 19 DEAD HOT SHOTS
      They did not follow the rules so attack me I am saying the same thing and so are many of my fellow Fire Fighters. There was no escape route. There was no posted look out. The SZ that they were headed to was over 12 min. away not good when they were in one to begin with. The had no communications with any one that was watching their move. The AA you suggest was their lookout was to busy to keep track of a crew.

      Failure to identify several of the 18 situations. They simply put themselves in harms way by not following Fire Fighting Rules.

      Sorry Elizabeth every thing you said falls way short of the facts.

      Again KENNY admitted he waited to long and stretched the 10 Standard orders to the limit.
      He also so said he learned from his experience.

      I am sure Marsh Steed and the crew knew they made the biggest mistake of there lives when they prepared to deploy. Most all who have been there and survived will tell you the same thing I can assure you every one on that crew knew what they did wrong and were stuck with a final hope for survival in a fire shelter.

      THERE IS NO FOLLOWING THE RULES HERE AND DYING. IT DOSE NOT HAPPEN IN YOUR SIMPLE WORLD— YOU A NEWYORKER HAVE NO CLUE.

      When Hell is real and all around you and you have seen the Elephant and spent years learning how to Fight Wild Land Fire. Then you can discuss the 10 & 18 on an equal footing.

      One More Thing I am explaining the facts to you. There is no reference to attacking you here.

      • Elizabeth says

        Bob, first, Air Attack was not GM’s lookout. They were already gone for the day.

        Second, Kenny says in his video that the very well-regarded WFF who did the investigation of Kenny’s deployment said (paraphrasing) that Kenny followed “the Rules” (the Ten Standard Orders) yet STILL got entrapped.

        That was my only point, Bob: You can follow the Ten Standard Orders in a way that seems reasonable and have LCES and STILL get caught.

        (Folks who have fought wildland fires more recently than you have all know this. Uber-extreme fire behavior is unfortunately not predictable enough given the nascent state of fire science with respect to uber-extreme fire behavior.)

        • Bob Powers says

          REALLY ELIZABETH

          33 years of living and breathing a carrier of wild land fire .
          I can tell you to day is no different than 30 years ago The 10 & 18 are still very real and the Fire fighters I know and talk to that are fighting fire today will tell you the same as I just got done doing.

          Several years in Southern Cal in as you say Uber-Extreme Fire Behavior
          thought us the 10 and 18 were as good then as now.
          Todays Fire Fighters like Sawtooth Payette and Boise Hot Shots Who are friends of mine all believe in the 10 & 18 as the absolute rules so no I am not out of touch and can sit down with todays fire fighters and Carrie my weight.

          When things go to shit that’s extreme fire behavior today or 40 years ago
          Extreme is Extreme——– again you have no clue.

          And you tried to convince me this summer that AA B33 was GM Look Out
          So don’t play that game either. .

          • Elizabeth says

            Bob, do you mind if I post various quotes from our e-mail exchanges to show that I did NOT take the positions that you are trying to claim that I took? I am asking you so that I do not offend you by doing it without you first signing-off on it.

            • Bob Powers says

              SO NOW YOU ARE SAYING THAT THERE WAS NO LOOKOUT AGREED TO IN THE AIR. AND THERE FOR NONE ON THE GROUND?

              You just confirmed no LCES OR TEN STANDARD ORDERS followed by GM –which we have known for over a year now.

              ELIZABETH they died because they did not follow the rules how simple and straight forward is that.

              NO ONE DIES WHEN THEY FOLLOW THE RULES EXTREEM BURNING CONDITIONS OR OTHERWISE.

              What was discussed between us was not discussed on here so your posts would violate your own agreement with MYSELF AND OTHERS…..
              .
              As you have already violated RTS said agreement.

              WARNING DO NOT GIVE ELIZABETH/LOGICAL PHALLACY YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS AS SHE WILL USE IT AGINST YOU. YOU WILL BE SORRY THAT YOU DID. SHE WILL STOCK YOU.

            • Bob Powers says

              Elizabeth our and your request for emails was as you said private to release any thing that I did not say here openly is a violation of your own agreement with MYSELF and others.

              I do not know what—– various quotes—– you want to post here so no I do not give you permission………………..

              WARNIG DO NOT GIVE ELIZABETH / LOGICAL PHALLACY YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS AS SHE WILL USE IT AGINST YOU. YOU WILL BE SORRY THAT YOU DID…

              • Elizabeth says

                Bob, when you keep referencing our e-mail exchanges, how do you suppose I am going to reply, other than by posting those e-mails? Either STOP lying about them, or expect that I will take that as your explicit permission to post them!
                When you claim that I said certain things in e-mails when I know that I did not, you are essentially begging me to post those e-mails. Otherwise, you would not talk about them (and misstate them). Thank you in advance for either being accurate about them or allowing me to post them here so thatI can show what I said. For example, you have repeatedly referenced our e-mail exchanges regarding winds, but I have since learned that the reality is that our wind exchanges revealed more expertise on my part than yours, unfortunately.

                • Bob Powers says

                  Elizabeth you are showing your true colors I have said nothing specific to our discussions over emails nor will I
                  The subjects we discussed I have stated not the content.
                  You are only showing your true nature to post emails between us and private. We did not discuss them here and we should not now. What I said is what I said but it was a private exchange and should be left there.

                  If you wish to start playing that game you will prove what we are already saying. You can not be trusted to not release private information or discussions………….

                  AND IF YOU THINK YOU KNOW MORE ABOUT WEATHER AND ITS AFFECTS ON FIRE YOU ARE TRULY DELUSIONARY. Answering your statement above and not our discussion On email.

                  WARNING DO NOT GIVE ELIZABETH YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS AS SHE WILL USE IT AGINST YOU.

                  • Elizabeth says

                    Bob, you have repeatedly referenced our e-mail exchanges here, and I am offering to POST those exchanges here, so that you will stop lying about them. You have repeatedly brought them up – not me!

                    • Bob Powers says

                      I do not have a copy of any of them yours or mine
                      So if you want to make a one sided conversation some how attacking me.
                      Its your game not mine.
                      If you are going to start that game hopefully JD will block you from this blog.

                      You will only prove what we have been saying
                      do not give Elizabeth your email or discuss information with her she will use it against you with no remorse.

                      Go back to your own BLOG and type what you want its not relevant. nor worth my time.

          • Robert the Second says

            Elizabeth/Logical Phallacy,

            Robert the Second here. You are SO predictable! With you once again, misrepresenting the facts, twisting the truth to fit your means to an end habit, and all the other types of legal maneuver machinations. Your goal is to continually want to steer all relevant Subject Matter to be discussed on this site, ACCORDING TO YOUR STANDARDS in your persistent goal to be the self-imposed arbiter of Truth and Justice and everything righteous.

            First off, I Robert the Second, said “You can find NO investigation report and/or review anywhere, where a WFF followed all The WFF Rules and ended up burned, in a fire shelter, or a fatality. NO WHERE!” Did you get that? NO INVESTIGATION REPORT AND/OR REVIEW. This Big Creek Fire Shelter Deployment is NOT listed anywhere in the Wildland Fire Lessons Learned Center nor anywhere else for that matter. Therefore, my original assertion still holds as truthful and accurate.

            Carefully reviewing former Sierra HS Supt. Ken Jordan’s Big Creek Fire, fire shelter deployment video will CLEARLY AND LITERALLY reveal (NOT PARAPHRASING) but quoting here, Jordan stated “Gary Cons (sp?) the Investigator, was about one of the best of the best Fire Behavior guys; he checked off my list and felt ALL THE FIRE ORDERS AND WATCH OUTS WERE IN PLACE.” (EMPHASIS ADDED)

            Furthermore, IF ALL the Fire Orders AND THE WATCH OUTS WERE IN PLACE then he should have been LONG GONE out of there. Therefore, he was NOT fighting fire by The Rules. And he later admitted to staying too long because he was one of the primary lookouts for his Crew.

            • Bob Powers says

              I would also add that the statement Elizabeth refers to was Stated after Jordon’s short recap of what happened.
              This all took place on yarnelhillfireblog at the end a reply by the Administrator of said blog stated.

              THE 10 STANDARD ORDERSAND LCES SOME TIMESS PROVE INSUFFICENT SSUCH THAT YOU CAN END UPIN A BAD SITUATION EVEN THOUGH YOU COMPLY WITH THEM.

              No place in Jordon’s statement did he state that– it is pure conjecture by the Administrator of that blog base on a assumption.
              Again indicating the blog is Administered by ELIZABETH.

        • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

          Reply to Elizabeth post on December 15, 2014 at 1:54 pm

          >> Elizabeth said…
          >>
          >> Air Attack was not GM’s lookout.

          TRUE.

          >> Elizabeth also said…
          >>
          >> They were already gone for the day.

          FALSE.

          • FIRE20+ says

            EN said:
            “Bob, first, Air Attack was not GM’s lookout. They were already gone for the day.”
            Come on, haven’t we already laid out that Air Attack is technically everyone’s lookout? And Air Attack was gone for the day? Failing to pay attention to this detail and then believing you are educating yourself in fire, you’re funny.

            EN said:
            “You can follow the Ten Standard Orders in a way that seems reasonable and have LCES and STILL get caught.

            (Folks who have fought wildland fires more recently than you have all know this. Uber-extreme fire behavior is unfortunately not predictable enough given the nascent state of fire science with respect to uber-extreme fire behavior.)”

            As far as the Ten Standard go, we haven’t invented new ways to kill firefighters. You’re missing the intent of the Ten Standard or you’re picking a fight. Which is it? They’re not in place to predict fire behavior, but to give tools to stay alive! And I can assure you firefighters today follow them and respect them. Your sources aren’t conveying reality to you. And what you call “uber-extreme” fire behavior, that’s just another day in R-3 during Monsoon season or R-1 in August, normal ops.

            • Bob Powers says

              FIRE20+ was referring to B33 which took over as AA acting when B3 left him in charge.
              .

              No they were not Lookouts in any shape or form as what a lookout is, yes they were in the sky over the fire and viewing the entire fire.

              Goes back a long way to this summer and a discussion that did not happen here. B33 was on the fire and there till after the deployment he was acting as AA. Sorry if I confused you.

      • Sonny says

        On this one Bob Powers is right on. In all the firefighters we hiked up along that two track we heard the same thing. They just shook their heads and said that none of the firefighter rules were followed here. And that includes such heavies as Dr. Ted Putnam, Wayne Niel, and even former GMHS people.

        Now, I will say, I don’t think you even needed the firefighter rules to know better than dropping off into that basin considering the dense brush, the proximity of a wild fire in the energy releasing range of a Hiroshima/Nagasaki bomb, a known thunderstorm in the north east, meteorological reports of coming winds and gusts to 45mph, and looking at a ranch house that has already been declared “bomb proof”. As the mayor of Prescott, Marlin Kueykendall said to me: “Common sense goes a long ways”. But what actually swayed Marsh’s origional decision to stay in the black? Or was it even his decision to go down there. Steed was on the horn as often as Marsh. Who influenced the origional thought?

        One thing from where they were in the black, if they were still near their origional morning fire line and work, they would have to follow the two track for about 3/4 mile and completely out of sight of the Helms ranch until they reached that saddle or were just above the saddle on that two track. They would have covered all that in the green albeit the two track would have been clear enough to move along at a good pace. They would be watching the wild fire in its amazing advance toward people’s valley and just a mile or so below them. It would be after they dropped off in that basin that they would have lost sight of the fire and would have green behind them as well as in front of them. Heaven help them should the wind change because they were in a maze where there would absolutely be no running. You could make it to the boulders either to the South or to the North from where they were–but not to that ranch–no way–Joy and I had come through that brush, and it took some hours just to make a mile without packs, chain saws and cumbersome clothing.

        So yes, Marlin, Common Sense does go a long ways. So those rules are common sense.

    • Marti Reed says

      Please provide EVIDENCE that:

      1. The Granite Mountain Hotshots, when they left the black they were in and attempted to cross a brush-filled bowl to reach the Boulder Springs Ranch, were maintaining adherence to the 10/18/LCES, which, then, just failed to work for them.

      2. Ken Jordan believes the Granite Mountain Hotshots were abiding by all the above rules, in spite of their otherwise astonishing and inexplicable demise, given what he said about them in the video that follows the one you are referencing.

      2. You understand fire/weather behavior more than Bob Powers does. or even I do. So far I have seen no evidence in the past year of this conversation here that that is the case. I agree the Granite Mountain Hotshots walked into “extreme fire behavior.” But I also agree with others that, given the way monsoon weather characteristically works in the Southwest, “extreme fire behavior” was entirely predictable at the time they chose to walk into it.

      What Bob Powers has said, here, all along, is, essentially, that they shouldn’t have walked into it. Regardless of exactly which way it was going.

      Please provide evidence that you understand fire behavior any better than that.

      Otherwise, I will consider what you are doing here to be no more constructive than diversion. And using Ken Jordan’s brief words, out of context, to further that aim.

      • Marti Reed says

        And, no, Air Attack was not “already gone for the day.”

        Bravo 33 was fulfilling the role of Air Attack at the time of the deployment. That’s what Air Support Modules are designed to do. Whether you agree with that rather controversial model these days or not.

        So there’s that. Also.

        I would Advise. More. Homework.

  9. Joy A. Collura says

    was in touch today with the History Channel guy/producer Demetri and I will update here first than get back to him but I am very much not well.

    I will post the raw unedited YFD meeting which to me was boring even on topic of us but it is here public for you all.

    I need to post it than go lay down or something. right behind the right eye intense pain….so doubt I will read much on updates on here—

    AGAIN let me EDUCATE the PUBLIC and LOCALS…PLLLLEEEEEEEEEEAAASSSSEEEE start sharing your photos public. How much time has to pass by? What does it have to take? It is CRUCIAL you all share!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Joy A. Collura says

      thank you to some of the current and retired or no longer a part of the firefighter community that was there as well as Brian Murphy and Errol Eastwood and very appreciative to Mayor Ed Gregory and Congress resident Pat Fisher for your attempts as well as my husband taking time away from his work schedule to be there and Sonny and very deeply appreciative to Patti & Larry McCracken for just being there for support. No Dr. Leroy Anderson; ??? Maybe forgot.

      • Joy A. Collura says

        Smokejumper Murray Taylor- we got your email 12:25pm 12-15-14 and we are looking forward to ordering your new book ( t-hangar days) (jumper humor) Happy Holidays to you too. Buy his book today “More or Less Crazy”

    • Joy A. Collura says

      Feel free to forward this email anyone else you might think would be interested in purchasing the book. I wanted to write a funny book, one with lots of humor (you know–jumper humor) and I think I got a good bit of that done. It was a hell of a lot of work and really happy it’s finally finished.

      All the best and Happy Holidays, Murry A. Taylor, Author of Jumping Fire.

      This is the link to the paperback: *There’s no hardcover at this point.

      http://bookstobelievein.com/MoreorLessCrazy.php

      You can also call 303.794.8888 direct to order this book. This link, or a phone call, is my preferred way for you to get the book. If you buy it from Amazon, you might get it a little cheaper, but I only get $4.00. If you buy it from Books To Believe In I get $12.00.

      http://bookstobelievein.com/MoreorLessCrazy.php

      Synopsis: More or Less Crazy

      In More or Less Crazy I return to the summer of 1973. It is my first as an Alaska smokejumper, and a wild and freewheeling time in and around Fairbanks. It’s the beginning of the construction of the Alaska pipeline. From our comfortable barracks and tent frames on the green banks of the Chena River, a new and clueless District Manager moves the crew to a deserted old hangar on Fort Wainwright. He is bent on ridding Alaska of smokejumpers. They just cause too many problems. The T-hangar has no running water, no electricity, no heat. The crew is made up of Vietnam Vets, ex-Air America bad boys, and transfers and no-rehires from the jump bases in the Lower 48. Being stuck on Fort Wainwright in the old T- Hangar, surrounded by chain link fences and gravel lots, and under the eye of the Military Police is a recipe for disaster.

      Al Mattlon, our new base foreman, is a different kind of boss. One who senses the value of the individual spirit. Crew meetings begin. Trust builds. Strong personalities come forward, then together in an outrageous testimony to the joy of living life fully in one of America’s last great true-life adventures. In an odyssey of movement and beauty we jump fires from Kodiak Island to the shadows of Denali, and in the winds of Isabel Pass. By early August we are jumping fires out of the North Cascade Smokejumper Base in North Central Washington, then La Grande in Northeastern Oregon, then on to Missoula, Montana to finish the season.

      I don’t claim this to be the complete/definitive story of the T-Hangar Days. There’s just too much to contain in one book. It is but a mere glimpse. Spend a summer with a crew of special characters and witness, not only its ability to perform minor miracles stopping wildfires, but also to laugh and play in a raucous celebration of the human spirit. I hope you enjoy it.

      One more thing, I’d really appreciate you writing a review as soon as you finish the book. Either on the To Books to Believe In site, or on Amazon.com. This especially helps if done on Amazon. Thanks so much. Murry

      Again the link: http://bookstobelievein.com/MoreorLessCrazy.php

      • Joy A. Collura says

        someone in email asked me what my view of the meeting. Let me make it straight, I like the fire board members so it is hard to go to a meeting where I like the people on the board. I mean I don’t just like them—I care about the fire board all with heart. My concern is the people who have come to me locally on the topic of Chief Ben Palm not just locally but in his old stomping grounds…otherwise I would NEVER know a lick about who he is and so because I know what Chief stated to me and he sticks with his statement I would find him a person who is not 100% transparent and so to me I will continue to help piece this puzzle together…For the loved ones of the GMHS who know me —do know— as soon as this head pain diminishes I do plan to reach T/S who is someone who has a great account and file…working on it. I know I said the meeting was boring…anything would disinterest me today with my head pain…I am just here typing because Sonny wanted to post here. As you all know he sees the fire different than me. I just want to build the community to 100% transparent and we all pull together and share our accounts so this fire can properly be assessed for EVERYONE affected by the YHF. Thank you for the MANY emails and calls who said they got notice too late and wish they were there…I know you would have…I reckon it is nice to know people support us finding the facts out for the public.

      • Marti Reed says

        Thank you, Joy!

        I will listen to that tomorrow.

        My very elderly mom is having lots of physical problems these days, so I’ve had a hard time keeping up.

        And I empathize with the fact that you are having lots of physical problems right now, also. Please take care of yourself!!!

      • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

        I know a snow boarder who survived an avalanche.

        He went right back to doing these ‘chopper drops’ on steep slopes
        with fresh snow.

        I asked him WHY?

        He said “If I’m not pushing the envelope… I’m not having any FUN”.

        Killing yourself is one thing.

        Taking others WITH you is something else altogether.

        That’s why RULES were invented… and if you can’t follow them… go home.

        • Robert the Second says

          The psychological phenomenon of GROUPTHINK, which I allege also occurred on the YH Fire as a causal factor with the GMHS incident, becomes very clear as well in many of these links.

          • Robert the Second says

            The link below is to the Fire Management Notes (Volume 55, 1995) with the overall theme of ‘Firefighter Safety and Health.’ The particular citations below are from an article titled” “Beyond the Safety Zone: Creating a Margin of Safety” by Mark Beigley.
            http://www.fs.fed.us/fire/fmt/fmt_pdfs/055_04.pdf

            “The RISK THRESHOLD for all firefighters is DIFFERENT. Every firefighter
            possesses a different combination of knowledge and experience with which to evaluate the relative safety of the current situation. Firefighters
            may also have DIFFERENT INFORMATION REGARDING LOCAL FACTORS THAT MIGHT AFFECT FIRE BEHAVIOR. There is an ASSUMPTION THAT VETERAN FIREFIGHTERS HAVE WELL-DEFINED, ACCURATE RISK THRESHOLDS. Also, it is ASSUMED THAT THESE RISK THRESHOLDS CANNOT BE DEPENDED UPON TO PROVIDE A CONSISTENT AND APPROPRIATE ASSESSMENT OF SAFETY FOR ANY GIVEN TACTICAL FIRELINE OPERATION. (ALL EMPHASIS ADDED)

            The GMHS had or should have had a completely firm grasp on the ‘local factors’ affecting fire weather and fire behavior being that this YH Fire was virtually in their own backyard AND they were on the Doce Fire days prior with even more extreme fire behavior.

            As far as the ASSUMPTION that veteran firefighters maintained accurate risk thresholds,I allege that this did NOT apply to certain GMHS supervisors that instead practiced a repeated habit of Bad Decisions With Prior Good Outcomes.

            “But even if firefighters have developed accurate risk thresholds, they always have a DEGREE OF UNCERTAINTY because of inadequate or
            deteriorating information.”

            Based on Fire Orders #1 and #3 (weather conditions and forecasts AND expected fire behavior), there should have been NO uncertainty for the GMHS since they had the best view of the YH Fire, better than anybody else, AND they had unfettered radio communication access as well!

            “The firefighter must constantly evaluate where that line [OF UNCERTAINTY] is and how close he or she is to it, given the current situation. Uncertainty is always present. RISK THRESHOLD IS NOT MEASURABLE, THEREFORE NOT QUANTIFIABLE. FIREFIGHTERS CANNOT MEASURE HOW CLOSE THEY ARE TO AN UNSAFE SITUATION. ONLY THE FIRE CAN PROVIDE FEEDBACK TO THE ACCURACY OF THEIR RISK THRESHOLD.”

            In the case of the GMHS and the YH Fire, I allege that they DID in fact have A MEASURABLE AND THEREFORE QUANTIFIABLE KNOWLEDGE of the UNSAFE SITUATION THAT THEY PLACED THEMSELVES IN BY LEAVING A PERFECTLY GOOD SAFETY ZONE DURING EXTREME FIRE WEATHER AND ASSOCIATED EXTREME FIRE BEHAVIOR.” I allege that no one else placed them in that final position but themselves.

            • Bob Powers says

              I can relate to and understand this one sentence —–
              ONLY THE FIRE CAN PROVIDE FEEDBACK TO THE ACCURACY OF A FIRE FIGHTERS RISK THRESHOLD.

              Situational awareness is what makes a good fire fighter but in the end it is what the fire is telling you that keeps you and every one around you safe. The 10 Standard orders are from very old school each one learned and studied separately until they were put together in 1957.
              The 10 standard orders is nothing more than the fire telling you what is safe and what is not. RISK THRESHOLD

              Bad decisions with good outcomes–WHAT IS SAFE AND WHAT IS NOT—ORDER #10 Fight Fire Aggressively but Provide for Safety First. It was put there for a reason.

            • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

              Reply to Robert the Second (RTS) post
              on December 14, 2014 at 3:36 pm

              >> RTS said…
              >>
              >> The link below is to the Fire Management Notes
              >> (Volume 55, 1995) with the overall theme of ‘Firefighter
              >> Safety and Health.’ The particular citations below are
              >> from an article titled” “Beyond the Safety Zone:
              >> Creating a Margin of Safety” by Mark Beigley.
              >>
              >> http://www.fs.fed.us/fire/fmt/fmt_pdfs/055_04.pdf

              Read it. Thank you. Great document.

              However… you had one bad ‘typo’ up above that changed the meaning of one of the sentences in the document.

              You typed ‘CANNOT’ in a place where it actually should have been ‘CAN’ ( in relation to it being assumed veteran firefighters are always making the right judgements ).

              Paragraph above should have read like this…

              ( Your EMPHASIS retained, change noted as ‘*CAN*’… )

              “The RISK THRESHOLD for all firefighters is DIFFERENT. Every firefighter possesses a different combination of knowledge and experience with which to evaluate the relative safety of the current situation. Firefighters may also have DIFFERENT INFORMATION REGARDING LOCAL FACTORS THAT MIGHT AFFECT FIRE BEHAVIOR. There is an ASSUMPTION THAT VETERAN FIREFIGHTERS HAVE WELL-DEFINED, ACCURATE RISK THRESHOLDS. Also, it is ASSUMED THAT THESE RISK THRESHOLDS *CAN* BE DEPENDED UPON TO PROVIDE A CONSISTENT AND APPROPRIATE ASSESSMENT OF SAFETY FOR ANY GIVEN TACTICAL FIRELINE OPERATION. (ALL EMPHASIS ADDED)

            • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

              Reply to Robert the Second (RTS) post
              on December 14, 2014 at 3:36 pm

              >> RTS said…
              >>
              >> The link below is to the Fire Management Notes
              >> (Volume 55, 1995) with the overall theme of ‘Firefighter
              >> Safety and Health.’ The particular citations below are
              >> from an article titled” “Beyond the Safety Zone:
              >> Creating a Margin of Safety” by Mark Beigley.
              >>
              >> http://www.fs.fed.us/fire/fmt/fmt_pdfs/055_04.pdf

              Once again… thanks to RTS for this link and this document.

              Not only should it be REQUIRED reading… I think “there should be a test” and anyone even remotely being considered for a fireline command position should have to PASS the test based on this document or they don’t get hired for the job.

              What struck ME the most when reading this (entire) document
              ( officially published by the US Forestry Service ) is the section
              under ‘Margins of Safety’ where they basically say…

              “Try not to screw up… but if you do… just use your fire shelters”.

              Unbelievable.

              From page 22 of the PDF document ( which totals 40 pages )…

              ——————————————————
              CREATING A MARGIN OF SAFETY

              A margin of safety can be described as a cushion of time needed by firefighters to get to the safety zone before the fire gets to them.

              It is the positive difference of T1 minus T2. In figure 1, the difference is 6 minutes ( 18 minutes minus 12 minutes ), so the firefighters are in a safe position. If T1 equals T2 as in figure 2, the difference is ZERO and the fire and the firefighters arrive at the safety zone at approximately the same time.

              Obviously, this situation would not benefit the firefighters; the fire may block their planned escape route.

              At best, they would experience a very close call, so they need to evaluate their margin of safety for escape or build a new safety zone.

              It the difference is LESS than ZERO as in figure 3 ( T1 is 12 minutes and T2 is 15 minutes equalling -3 minutes ), then it is likely that the fire will reach the firefighters before they get to the safety zone.

              While we would hope that firefighters would deploy fire shelters and survive the fire, for a margin of safety, firefighters must arrive at the safety zone before the fire.
              ——————————————————–

              The amount of “No shit, Sherlock” being displayed in this section is astounding… but to just INSERT that suggestion that fire shelters might always be your “get out of fuck-ups free” card at this point in the document is just absurd.

              That being said…

              This section of this OFFICIAL US Forestry publication could NOT possibly be more relevant to what happened in that single hour of 3:45 PM to 4:45 PM in Yarnell, Arizona, on June 30, 2013

              Regardless of the WHY this group attempted that move… they had their ‘T1’ and their ‘T2’ so horribly wrong that it is hard to believe these people had ever even been on a fire before… or had ever even attended even the most basic WFF training class.

              It was ( in the end ) a complete a total TACTICAL failure ( regardless of motivations )… and even the preliminary reports should have been acknowledging this fact.

              • Robert the Second says

                WTKTT,

                Jolly good. Could not have said it any better.

                Fire shelters are said to be “responsible for saving hundreds of lives and preventing hundreds of injuries.”

                Maybe so, however, FOLLOWING THE WFF RULES OF LCES, the TEN STANDARD FIRE ORDERS AND THE 18 WATCH OUT SITUATIONS ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR SAVING THOUSANDS OF WFF LIVES EVERY SINGLE YEAR.

                You can find NO investigation report and/or review anywhere, where a WFF followed all The WFF Rules and ended up burned, in a fire shelter, or a fatality. NO WHERE!

                • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                  What is astounding to me in that OFFICIAL United States Forestry Service document is that ‘mindset’ that seems to be ‘leaking out’ such as the one pointed out above.

                  “Drop packs and RUN” is also an ‘officially’ accepted way to try and save your own ass when you have (already) screwed up pretty badly…

                  …but as this document above shows ( and some other training videos )… it seems as if the USFS doesn’t really like to ‘talk’ about THAT option very much.

                  Too much dependence on the ‘fire shelter’ shit… and I think THAT ‘mentality’ is very relevant to what happened in Yarnell that horrible day.

                  If the document above that was going to great lengths to try to explain in some kind of ‘child like’ way that YES… “it’s always better when making a move to make sure you have the TIME to get there before the damn fire does” felt the need to mention any ‘options’ when you have totally screwed up your ‘calculations’…

                  …then I think it should have at least read like this…

                  —————————————
                  “While we would hope that firefighters would EITHER ‘drop packs and run’ or ( as an absolute last resort ) deploy fire shelters to POSSIBLY survive the fire, for a margin of safety, firefighters must arrive at the safety zone before the fire.
                  —————————————

                  • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                    Followup…

                    Maybe it’s just the ‘R’ word in ‘drop packs and run’ that makes the USFS seemingly reluctant to talk about it.

                    Maybe they think the word RUN just isn’t all that compatible with “the HERO business”.

                    HEROES (supposedly) don’t RUN.
                    HEROES (supposedly) ‘stand and fight!’.

                    All for one… one for all… yada, yada, yada.

                    “Tends to RUN” Doesn’t ‘look good’ on
                    the ‘ol HERO resume’.

                    Even Mike Dudley ( a SENIOR level official in the US Forestry Department ) displayed this ‘mentality’ when he was talking to those firefighters in Utah on June 20, 2014.

                    He actually called the horror of the deployment site a ‘lesson in cohesiveness’… and then used the term RABBITS for anyone who would NOT tend to lay down and die with his buddies.

                    Darrell Willis in on record saying how PROUD he was that they all just basically laid down and burned to a crisp ‘together’…. with HONOR ( his words ).

                    So yeah… maybe it’s the work RUN.

                    Not compatible with the ‘HERO business’.

                    Maybe they should change the name of that accepted technique of saving your own damn life to something like…

                    “Drop packs and reposition”.

                    HEROES are, in fact, allowed to ‘reposition’.

                    Sounds like you are just getting into a better spot to do more ass-kicking.

                    But ‘RUN’?

                    Nah… that sounds like it will just get you a ‘pink helmet’ award, or something.

                    • Bob Powers says

                      WTKTT
                      First let me say I do not know any Wild Land Fire Fighters or have I known over the past 55 years that call them selves HEROES.
                      They are not in the HERO business.
                      They do not have a HERO resume.
                      There is not a one of us that has not RUN to a Safety Zone at one time. and made sure each and every one of our crew got there. Because we planed in advance and had the time.

                      Organized runs are always better than a jack rabbit scatter and most were not really runs but hurry up and get there.

                      The worst scenario is putting your self and crew in a panic run and scatter. #9 Maintain con troll of your Forces at all times.
                      #6 Be Alert, Keep Calm, Think Clearly Act Decisively.
                      #5 Post lookouts when there is POSSIBLE danger. The word is POSSIBLE not when you are in danger but before.

                      If you read and study each order then you will understand #10.

                      The 18 Situations tell you to STOP step back and plan and implement safety before proceeding.

                      So we Go back to Granit Mountain they did none of the above and put them selves in a position of Shelter deployment. Their supervisors failed to follow the 10 & 18 and they ended up in their situation that is the fact no matter what the reason.

                    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                      Reply to Bob Powers post on
                      December 15, 2014 at 10:12 am

                      >> Bob Powers wrote…
                      >>
                      >> First let me say I do not know
                      >> any Wild Land Fire Fighters or
                      >> have I known over the past 55
                      >> years that call them selves HEROES.

                      Of course. It’s really more of a matter of how SOCIETY, in general, views them and the work they do. Most FFs just think they are ‘doing their job’. Nothing more. Nothing less. It is SOCIETY itself that tends to label them HEROES.

                      >> Bob Powers also said…
                      >>
                      >> They are not in the HERO business.

                      Well.. yes they are… pretty much… whether they personally care to acknowledge it, or not.

                      See above. There are few professions in society that sort of automatically get the HERO label attached to them. Firefighting is one of those professions.

                      I drove by my own State Capitol building just this morning and there are only THREE ‘monuments’ erected there. ( With bronze statues and whatnot ).

                      One is for World War II veterans.
                      One is for Vietnam war veterans.
                      One is for Firefighters.

                      I think most FFs, while being personally humble, are VERY much aware that they ARE in ‘the hero business’, like it or not.

                      >> Bob Powers also said…
                      >>
                      >> Organized runs are always better
                      >> than a jack rabbit scatter.

                      Probably so.

                      Do you think that is what USFS official Mike Dudley was really referring to when he, himself, used the term RABBITS ( in a derisive tone ) in his speed to those Utah FFs?

                      Was this what he was referring to?

                      The advantages of a an ‘organized RUN’ to safety versus an ‘every man for himself’ sort of thing?

                      >> Bob Powers also said…
                      >>
                      >> So we Go back to Granit Mountain
                      >> they did none of the above and
                      >> put them selves in a position of
                      >> Shelter deployment. Their
                      >> supervisors failed to follow the
                      >> 10 & 18 and they ended up in
                      >> their situation that is the fact
                      >> no matter what the reason.

                      Agree. If you just look at that official US Forestry document that RTS found and what it teaches… they had their T1 and their T2 horribly wrong that day… and paid for that mistake with their lives.

                      Regardless of motivations… once they set about making the MOVE itself.. it was a horrible TACTICAL error… and can/should be studied further from that perspective alone.

                    • Bob Powers says

                      Again there is a huge difference in structure Fire Fighters and wild Land FF.
                      Structure FF have equipment that allowed them to run into buildings and save people real hero’s.
                      Wild land Fire Fighters build line and save Forests for the most part. They seldom save structures in the Urban Interface unless they have a lot of time to build line around structures.
                      They are not trained to put there lives on the line to save people homes or forests,
                      So no they are not in the Hero business and no they do not get promoted for putting their lives in jeopardy. They get bad Safety ratings.

                    • Robert the Second says

                      WTKTT,

                      When Mike Dudley used the term :RABBITS” in his Utah Fire Authority presentation, that is EXACTLY what he was talking about.

        • Robert the Second says

          SR,

          Yes, this Wallowa Alpine Huts accident is a good one. The danger/warning signs were all there but evidently ignored and/or discounted.

  10. Bob Powers says

    A look at Joys Google Map shows a real problem with a dozer line north of Glen Isla to the BSR.
    It is like Boulder strewn land scape. No place for a dozer to do much of any thing and certainly a very slow Indirect line building for a hand Crew.. It was certainty not the place to build fast Dozer line if at all with the bolder strewn land scape. Just my take from experience.

    https://www.google.com/maps/place/17613+Westward+Dr,+Yarnell,+AZ+85362/@34.21781,-112.764711,772m/data=!3m2!1e3!4b1!4m2!3m1!1s0x80d3304c99643251:0x7a2ad746b7f38ff9

    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

      Mr. Powers… thank you. Throughout the discussion below I kept waiting from someone ( anyone ) with some good ‘dozer firebreak construction’ experience to actually just go off and look at the same satellite imagery that we KNOW SPGS1 Gary Cordes was looking at that day.

      I believe I can see some ‘possibilities there’.

      The driveway leading out to the Boulder Springs Ranch was ‘clean as a whistle’ and more than two dozer blades wide… pretty much wider than anything else anyone had even been working on all day long.

      I also see a dry creek bed there that *might* also have been used to connect over to the botton of the Sesame area where the dozer loboy was staged. Google Earth shows that it was probably ‘pushable’ with that fixed-blade dozer they had.

      But I have never ridden a dozer and been pointing at the ground telling some guy where to push to try and stop a fire. Not even once.

      It doesn’t matter what I think. It actually doesn’t matter all that much what any one us HERE thinks… in hindsight.

      What is/was essential to the discussion below is what did SPGS Gary Cordes think?

      Obviously HE thought there were ‘possibilities’ there or he wouldn’t have even asked BR Hotshot Cory Ball to ‘scout it out’ circa 1600 ( 4:00 PM ).

      SPGS1 Gary Cordes had all day to go ‘scout that out’ himself… but I honestly think the situation we are looking at here is that NONE of these ‘professional firefighters’ on the ground that day thought for one minute that the fire was going to be coming into Yarnell during THAT burn cycle.

      On the south side of the fire… they were totally focused on those ‘other’ dozer lines… even though anyone with line building experience now seems to say there was no way they had the manpower to do what they were attempting that day. Even if the Arroyo Hotshot vehicle hadn’t broken down and Arroyo had been able to make it… many have said it was just too much line for so little manpower/equipment.

      Gary Cordes must have told ADOSH about 4 or 5 times, in his interview, that the REASON for all kinds of things that day was the fire simply ‘outperforming out expectations’.

      That sad part is that Air Attack ‘Bravo 3’ had ALL the ‘correct expectations as early as 12:30 PM that day. They knew Granite Mountain was already (quote) “out of the game” even at that early hour… and when they say the other Hotshot team that WAS already there ( Blue Ridge ) just sitting on their asses near their buggies doing nothing at all… that’s when ‘Bravo 3’ decided to put in that ‘desperation’ retardant line right in the middle of the frickin’ ‘gasoline-on-a-stick’ manzanita fuel

      So there’s already plenty of evidence ( even from people’s own mouths ) that they were operating from ‘unrealistic’ perspectives in Yarnell that day.

      I still maintain that some ‘plan’ to throw in this emergency dozer push to at least try to keep the fire from charging right into that Glen Ilah subdivision that afternoon might have been just one more ‘unrealistic expectation’ on the part of fire management that day… but they were still going to try and do it, anyway, if possible.

      Other ‘unrealistic expectations’ on the part of ground forces all day…

      1) The night before, SPGS2 Darrell Willis officially noted in his logs that the ‘Double Bar A Ranch’ had very little chance of being protected… but come the morning… there were still TONS of valuable resources out there at that place doing the usual… push a little line, chop a little brush, burnout a little if the winds will let you stuff going on. NONE of that ended making ANY difference… just as Willis had said it wouldn’t the night before.

      2) The night before, SPGS1 Gary Cordes said that if the fire even STARTED to come into Yarnell… they really wouldn’t be able to save much at all… but come the morning… there are Hotshot crews ( supposedly ) building line breaks and guys in engines with chainsaws actually cutting some brush in a canyon… like that was going to do ANYTHING. The only real solution for Yarnell was EARLY evacuation, more specific structure protection, MASSIVE Air Support… and all your fingers and toes crossed. Gary Cordes knew all that the night before… but come morning… all these resources are there working on plans with ‘expectations’ that just weren’t even realistic.

      3) SPGS2 Darrell Willis himself told ADOSH that the ‘other’ defensive operation there on Model Creek Road would have, itself, been another total failure and waste of time if the wind hadn’t reversed when it did. If the winds had remained from the southwest, that fire was going to jump that Mode Creek Road like a 10 year old hopping over the cracks in the sidewalk and it would have just marched into Peeples Valley. Even according to Willis… there would probably have been ‘total destruction’ in THAT community.

      I could go on… but in all these cases the key word is ‘expectation’.

      Someone, somewhere… EXPECTED all these things to work despite others ( Like Air Attack Bravo 3 ) knowing damn well they didn’t have a chance.

      So the same *might* have been true for this attempt to push dozer line to protect Glen Ilah at the last minute… and someone’s ‘expectation’ that it *might* make a difference.

      If they had actually done it… and the fire just jump right over it and destroyed Glen Ilah anyway… then that would be just one more ‘failed expectation’ that could be added to the list above along with all the other ‘work’ they were doing that really didn’t have a chance of making a difference that day.

      One of the important ‘Lessons Learned’ from this fire ( even if no one had died ) would be how in the world was so much WORK being done that people now look at ( and testify about ) and admit it didn’t have a chance that day.

      Was it all just ‘busy work’? Make it ‘look good’ to prevent lawsuits from property owners?

      Earlier evacuations might not have saved any more structures… but it would have made a HUGE difference with regards to people having the TIME to collect up their most valuable possessions and get THEM out of harm’s way.

      • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

        All of the above is only talking about SUNDAY.

        The ‘incorrect assumptions/expectations’ began long before that.

        Given the topography, conditions and EXPECTED weather that weekend… the only real cure was prevention.

        The minute that DOC crew let that puppy ‘escape’ over that two-track road and start charging down into that valley that night… the ‘realistic’ thing to do would have been to start the evacuations right then and there.

        Even former Yarnell Chief Peter Andersen knew that.

        He said “Without MASSIVE Air Support in country like this… you might as well just get out there and piss on it… which it looks like that’s all they were doin'”.

        • Bob Powers says

          A basic lack of enough recourses to accomplish the objectives on the 30th..
          Another Dozer and 2 more hand crews would have made a big difference.
          Concentrating Air Drops on the Fire its self in support of crews rather than 1000’S of wasted gallons in the middle of a brush field.

          Simple but 20/20 hind site.

          • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

            I know all of these men thought they were just ‘doing their job’… but here we are now still trying to make sense of the decisions being made pretty much that ENTIRE weekend.

            MOST of it just doesn’t make any sense.

            If you just taken the ‘intel’ that Darrell Willis and Gary Cordes came up with overnight… it’s a wonder the evacuations were NOT being called for first thing in the morning.

            People would have been pissed ( since they wouldn’t have been seeing the danger that early in the morning )… but in the end they would have been PRAISING the officials for those ‘early evacuation’ decision(s).

            There might also be a lot of people ‘whining’ and ‘hindsighting’ and saying things like “they should have been cutting dozer line all over the place”…

            …but I think Arizona Forestry’s decisions ( had they been more realistic ) would be standing up to scrutiny better than the ones their employees DID make that weekend.

            I would certainly give just about anything to be hearing people pissing and moaning about how Arizona Forestry decided that cutting dozer lines out in the boondock would be an absolute waste of time, given that topography and those conditions… than to still be trying to figure out why 19 men DIED in the performance of that ‘useless exercise’.

            • Robert the Second says

              WTKTT,

              The real ‘PREVENTION’ for residents of Yarnell would have been them, the YARNELL RESIDENTS, taking responsibility as private land owners, and actually ‘Firewising’ their property and/or performing hazardous fuels reduction weeks to months in advance of fire season on a regular annual basis, around their structures. It is NOT the responsibility of any Government agency or WFF to do that. It is PRIVATE PROPERTY.

              This is a link to a July 17, 2013 AZ Central article titled “Brush Clearing Saved Homes – Study: Homeowners who took precautions were saved.’ interesting report by a Washington state-based satellite company.

              http://www.azcentral.com/news/arizona/articles/20130715brush-clearing-saved-homes.html

              “Almost all the buildings in the burn zone that had been adequately cleared of surrounding brush survived the Yarnell Hill Fire, according to the first known study of the deadly blaze.”

              “However, only 63 structures out of 569 in the community, or 11 percent, were properly defended, according to researchers at the Pacific Biodiversity Institute.”

              “Of the 63, 60 were safe, while the fate of the other three could not be verified by the Washington state-based conservation-research group, which used satellite imagery and mapping software in its study.”

              “The study concluded that Yarnell and Glen Ilah “were not prepared for wildfire,” like the Yarnell blaze, …..”

              “The study, funded by donors, cost less than $10,000. The Center for Biological Diversity, a conservation-advocacy group, donated $3,000.”

              The AZ Central article concludes with “Although debate continues about what to do to prevent and respond to wildfires, there is little disagreement that they are certain to be more common and more dangerous, as the drought-stricken West continues to fill up with people. Fires like Yarnell’s are inevitable, experts agree”.

              “What is not is the loss of 19 firefighters.”

              “To prevent that from repeating, Morrison concluded, “There needs to be a thorough, independent investigation of all the factors that contributed to this tragedy. The rationale and wisdom of deploying of a hotshot crew in this chaparral-covered valley during extreme fire weather needs to be addressed by this investigation.””

              AGREED, however the SAIT failed to complete a THOROUGH investigation. Moreover, the GMHS, of their own accord, used Bad Decisions With Prior Good Outcomes ‘rationale and wisdom of deploying … [themselves into] this chaparral-covered valley during extreme fire weather’ NO ONE FORCED THEM to leave their perfectly good Safety Zone without the benefit of a REQUIRED LOOKOUT pursuant to LCES and the Ten Standard Fire Orders.

              Moreover, the proposed dozer work that you refer to above should/would have triggered MANY of the Watch Out Situations, namely #10 ATTEMPTING A FRONTAL ASSAULT AND #11 UNBURNED FUEL BETWEEN YOU AND THE FIRE. Therefore, a wise and prudent WFF would NOT have engaged in thosedozer operations except all morning long and early afternoon.

              • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                Reply to Robert the Second (RTS) post
                on December 14, 2014 at 4:31 pm

                >> RTS said…
                >>
                >> The real ‘PREVENTION’ for residents of Yarnell
                >> would have been them, the YARNELL RESIDENTS,
                >> taking responsibility as private land owners, and
                >> actually ‘Firewising’ their property and/or
                >> performing hazardous fuels reduction weeks to
                >> months in advance of fire season on a regular
                >> annual basis, around their structures.
                >> It is NOT the responsibility of any Government
                >> agency or WFF to do that. It is PRIVATE PROPERTY.

                Yes… except for the places where there ‘Government agencies’ HAVE stepped up and REQUIRED people living in high-risk urban interface areas to do something.

                Those districts are few and far between… but they do exist.

                It’s also about time the INSURANCE companies, themselves, stepped up to bat in this ball game. THEY are the ones who can certainly ‘tell people what they ought to be doing’ and its out of their own self-interest to do so.

                People NEVER like to be TOLD what to do… even if it is for their own good… but insurance companies have solved that ongoing problem in a number of other areas related to homeowner’s insurance. Either you do certain things or your policy is null and void if/when you ask THEM to ‘pay up’.

                As for Yarnell… YES… it was literally just a “disaster waiting to happen”, and SPGS1 Gary Cordes knew that the minute he arrived in Yarnell at 11:30 PM on Saturday night and was told to start ‘scouting around’ the Yarnell area.

                He KNEW there would be very little that could be done if the fire even STARTED to come into that area.

                From Gary Cordes’ ADOSH interview…

                Q2 = Dave Larsen ( ADOSH / WFA ) ( Rest in Peace )
                A = Gary Cordes ( SPGS1 at the Yarnell Hill Fire )
                ——————————————————–
                Q2: Uh, when, when you were looking at all of that stuff and assessing ( the night before ), what were your general thoughts, overall thoughts of Yarnell?

                A: Um, huh, my blanket statement to, to uh, the IC and the operations the next morning was that if fire hit this town we would lose it. It’s uh, it was poorly positioned and, and uh, very decadent with everything and um, it, it – we’re gonna lose it. That was the bottom line if fire hit town.
                ———————————————————

                Darrell Willis had a similar evaluation on the ‘north’ side and was told to check out the multi-million dollar “Double Bar A Ranch” area, which was sitting on the ‘front lines’ for fire threat the next morning.

                Willis saw the same thing Cordes did in Yarnell. There wasn’t much that they were going to be able to do to ‘save’ anything out at that place.

                Yet… in BOTH cases ( Yarnell generally and Double-Bar-A Ranch specifically )… the first thing in the morning TONS of expensive resources are being committed to doing things that were never going to work.

                So who was it that didn’t even LISTEN to SPGS1 Gary Cordes or SPGS2 Darrell Willis?

                WHO gave the orders for them to start doing all kinds of shit that they ( as professional WFF firefighters themselves ) had already decided wasn’t worth doing?

                Type 2 SHORT Team IC Roy Hall?
                OPS1 Todd Abel? OPS2 Paul Musser?

                We still don’t really know the answer to that.

                >> RTS also said…
                >>
                >> From AZCENTRAL article..
                >>”…Fires like Yarnell’s are inevitable, experts agree”.
                >> “What is not is the loss of 19 firefighters.”

                Of COURSE… and if you read the ‘wrongful death’ lawsuits that have been filed this is at the CORE of those suits. You basically CANNOT even file a civil action about just about anything without there being some MONETARY ‘damages’ involved somehow ( even in the case of ‘wrongful death’ filings )… but that isn’t the CORE issue of the suits.

                The families all state they want to SEE both Arizona AND US Forestry at least ‘acknowleding’ that the statement above is TRUE and there should be more of an official and visible reaction on their part to what happened in Yarnell.

                So far… it’s just “business as usual” from both Arizona and US Forestry.

                1) Yes… bad fires are going to continue to happen.
                2) Yes… firefighters are going to be dying horrible deaths.
                3) Yes… we will continue to build more memorial sites with nice benches and stuff.

                Nothing to see here… move along… move along.

                The families who filed suit do NOT accept ‘door number 2’… ( or ‘door number 3’ ) and in HONOR of the loved ones THEY have lost… they want to see Arizona and US Forestry NOT accepting it as well.

                It’s time they even officially dropped this long-debated “Fight fire aggressively, but provide for safety first” bullshit convoluted mantra.

                A good sign that they are ‘paying attention’ to what happened in Yarnell would be for them to OFFICIALLY announce that the NEW mantra is simply…

                “Fight Fire Safely”.

                Period. End of sentence.

                The ‘aggressively’ part that some moron always chose to ADD to the current mantra is AUTOMATICALLY IMPLIED with just the word ‘Fight’. Nothing more needs to be added there and (hence) no implied “Ranger Danger” shit. Of course people will ‘Fight’ the fire. That’s what they are PAID to do… but ‘coming home’ at the end of ANY work shift is ALWAYS the most important thing of all.

                >> RTS also wrote…
                >>
                >> ( Also from the AZCENTRAL article… )
                >> “To prevent that from repeating, Morrison
                >> concluded, “There needs to be a thorough,
                >> independent investigation of all the factors that
                >> contributed to this tragedy. The rationale and
                >> wisdom of deploying of a hotshot crew in this
                >> chaparral-covered valley during extreme
                >> fire weather needs to be addressed by
                >> this investigation.””
                >>
                >> AGREED, however the SAIT failed to
                >> complete a THOROUGH investigation.

                It wasn’t really an ‘investigation’ at all.

                It was just a ‘dog and pony’ show.

                THEY know that. They DECIDED to NOT do a real investigation, despite every press release that was made surrounding the creation of this SAIT and the actual stated PURPOSE of the unit in the actual ‘Transfer of Authority’ documents that were signed to get them their paychecks.

                I still think the taxpayers of the State of Arizona need Mike Dudley and JIm Karels to send back the money they left Arizona with. They didn’t even get what the group was CHARTERED to do… and why the money for it was allocated ( and SPENT ).

                >> “The rationale and wisdom of deploying of a
                >> hotshot crew in this chaparral-covered valley
                >> during extreme fire weather needs to be addressed
                >> by this investigation.”

                Totally agree.

                Those men shouldn’t have really been out in that boondock at all that day… or at least not then be told ( by some SPGS guy who didn’t even consider himself to be a Structure Protection Specialist ) that their ‘Safety Zone’ was just shy of 2 ( TWO ) MILES away from them. That’s just idiotic ( as well as a violation of rules unto itself ).

                When Air Attack ‘Bravo 3’ ( Rusty Warbis and Paul Lenmark ) arrived over the fire circa NOON… and then finally took a full ‘spin’ around the fire to do a professional situational analysis… THEY already knew ( as early as 12:30 PM ) that Granite Mountain was (quote) “out of the game already”.

                Those men should have been hiking BACK to their vehicles as early as 1:00 PM that day… and we wouldn’t be here having this discussion.

                >> RTS also said…
                >>
                >> Moreover, the proposed dozer work that you
                >> refer to above should/would have triggered
                >> MANY of the Watch Out Situations, namely
                >> #10 ATTEMPTING A FRONTAL ASSAULT AND
                >> #11 UNBURNED FUEL BETWEEN YOU AND THE FIRE.
                >> Therefore, a wise and prudent WFF would NOT
                >> have engaged in those dozer operations except
                >> all morning long and early afternoon.

                Agreed… but I can find no evidence in the public record that when Blue Ridge Hotshot Cory Ball ( acting as HEQB because the contracted one, Joeseph Hernandez, didn’t even bother to show up in Yarnell that morning ) was TOLD by SPGS1 Gary Cordes ( circa 4:00 PM ) to ‘scout out’ the possibility of dozer line out there near the Boulder Springs Ranch in order to protect Glen Ilah… that Cory Ball then said to SPGS Gary Cordes…

                “What… are you NUTS?”

                The only entry I can see in Cory Ball’s Unit Log is as follows…

                —————————————–
                1600…
                Structure group one assigns me and ONE OTHER to
                locate possibility of DOZER LINE to southwest of Yarnell.
                —————————————–

                There is no entry AFTER that from Ball saying…

                “…and I thought he was out of his mind”.

                Ball ( apparently ) said “Aye, aye, sir!” and proceeded to TRY and accomplish that ‘mission’.

                At 4:00 PM that day… SPGS1 Gary Cordes ( who didn’t even consider HIMSELF to be a Structure Protection Specialist ) thought it might be a ‘viable option’ even at that late hour… and this ‘command’ to (acting) HEQB Cory Ball would have taken place on a radio channel that DIVSA Eric Marsh could, himself, HEAR.

                • Bob Powers says

                  WTKTT
                  Your Idea and a Fire Fighters Idea of what Fight Fire aggressively means is in the interpolation.
                  1. Attack the fire at the point of burning flank and build line with all the tools at your command.
                  2. Remove hazards like snags before they burn and fall. pay attention to falling rocks and rolling logs.
                  3. Engines attack the flames and build line behind the water spray knock the fir down and move with line..
                  4. Many more techniques you are taught basically aggressive is attacking the fire with the equipment you have finding the best location to suppress the fire and building line direct and indirect.
                  Your safety depends on your knowledge and training.

                  All of the above with SAFETY FIRST. Thousands of fires are fought this way and none are Fatality Fires.
                  It is a mind set that has worked for generations. Its knowing Fire, its knowing the proper use of the tools you have and its planning safety into each step you make.
                  Again I did that for 33 years never deployed a fire shelter, never had a serious injury on my crews and had a lot of great ratings for accomplishing my assignment.

                  You are in a hostile environment besides the fire the terrain the mountain, the Snags the rocks and the fuel type as well as the weather can be your enemy.
                  Then you fall to your crew all at different levels of training the tools you Carrie and how they are used.

                  Old School we never dropped tools or packs and Ran we were taught what we had we might need even at a safety zone. Water, Fire shelter, Tools.

                  Some books taught and still teach that the fire shelter was your fail safe. Back then we taught the fire shelter was your last resort never depend on it to save your life and you will never need it. I spent the first 7 years as a Fire fighter with out a Fire Shelter They weren’t available till 1967/68.
                  We learned and drilled our self’s on the 10 & 13 that was our safety That was our learning curve. After watching the first training films on Fire shelters for years after we called them POTATO BAKERS, but it was mandatory we packed them. If you were good and followed the 10& 13
                  you would never need a Fire shelter proven fact.

                  So to me and many old Fire Fighters Rule number 10 tells you to follow all the other rules when you hit the fire line an start throwing dirt keep your heads up pay attention and be safe. and attack the fire.

                  • Bob Powers says

                    WTKTT
                    The best and most important thing you will find on Balls assignment is he went there and left the fire was already there no use to try Dozer line, too late….

                    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                      Mr. Powers… if you are talking about when Ball finally borrowed that ATV from Yarnell Fire department and then was on his way BACK to rejoin Justin and the dozer… then yes… the fire was now already ‘spotting’ into Glen Ilah and he couldn’t get back to the dozer.

                      But according to Ball’s Unit Log… Gary Cordes gave him the actual assignment circa 4:00 PM. The fire was still just approaching at that time.

                • Robert the Second says

                  WTKTT,

                  Good points above, however, you mention “that their ‘Safety Zone’ (SZ) was just shy of 2 ( TWO ) MILES away from them. That’s just idiotic ( as well as a violation of rules unto itself).

                  Actually NOT ‘idiotic’ or ‘a violation of rules.’ I have been on several fires where our SZ was that far or farther away from where we were building line. You just need to Base All Actions on Current and EXPECTED Fire Behavior and allow yourself and your Crew the time you need to arrive in your SZ BEFORE the fire.

                  Only in the Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) training course does it tell us to have a SZ within minutes away. LCES is an ongoing process and you just need to re-evaluate throughout the Operational Period how long it will take you and your Resources to safely arrive in your predetermined SZ BEFORE THE FIRE ARRIVES.

                  There was NO logical basis for the GMHS to LEAVE their perfectly good SZ when they did. And their twisting the use of an Escape Route to LEAVE a SZ makes no sense. You use and Escape Route to get TO a SZ, NOT from a SZ.

                  • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                    Well… I think you just supported what I said. You just said that WUI SZ’s are never supposed to be 2 miles away?

                    • Robert the Second says

                      WTKTT,

                      You are right. I guess I did support what you were saying because the YHF was predominately all WUI which calls for SZ locations to be within minutes.

                  • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                    Reply to Robert the Second post
                    on December 15, 2014 at 9:40 am

                    >> RTS said…
                    >>
                    >> There was NO logical basis for the
                    >> GMHS to LEAVE their perfectly
                    >> good SZ when they did.

                    No, there wasn’t… but we left ‘logic’ behind a long time ago with regards to decisions people were making pretty much that entire weekend.

                    >> RTS also said…
                    >>
                    >> And their twisting the use of an Escape
                    >> Route to LEAVE a SZ makes no sense.
                    >>
                    >> You use an Escape Route to get TO
                    >> a SZ, NOT from a SZ.

                    Correct…

                    There is still NO evidence that those men felt ‘uncomfortable’ in any way up there in those acres and acres of cold black… and that might be the reason they were deciding to move to ANOTHER ‘Safety Zone’.

                    Unless Brendan McDonough ( or someone else ) can shed more light on their decision making process… that will probably remain one of the biggest mysteries.

                    WHAT became so important to 2 men other than being safe that they would agree between themselves to then lead 17 other men to what would turn out to be their deaths?

                    Again… what we KNOW…

                    1555 – Everyone at rest in safe black, taking photos.
                    1600 – Cory Ball told to scout dozer line near BSR
                    1604 – GM is now up and moving south to BSR
                    1616 – Someone calls GM and asks for status
                    1617 – Eric Marsh says ‘GM taking escape route’
                    1627 – Someone calls DIVSA, wants to know where GM is and what is taking so long to reach town.
                    1635 – SPGS1 Gary Cords KNOWS GM is either already at BSR or about to arrive and tells Tyson Esquibel to send an engine there to make sure they (quote) “get out safely”.
                    1637 – DIVSA (supposedly) calls Air Attack to confirm what he thought was a line-up flight for a retardant drop right near the same area where Cordes had told Ball to ‘scout a dozer line’.
                    1639 – First MAYDAY call from Jesse Steed.

                    • Robert the Second says

                      WTKTT,

                      You posted “There is still NO evidence that those men felt ‘uncomfortable’ in any way up there in those acres and acres of cold black… and that might be the reason they were deciding to move to ANOTHER ‘Safety Zone’.”

                      There is NEVER a good reason to leave one perfectly good SZ for another. And certainly NOT when the GMHS supervisors decided to leave, when the fire behavior was pulsing at its strongest.

                      Brendan McDonough knows WHY they left.

                    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                      Reply to Robert the Second (RTS) post
                      on December 15, 2014 at 9:44 pm

                      >> RTS said…
                      >>
                      >> Brendan McDonough knows WHY they left.

                      There’s really never been any doubt about that.

                      If Brendan does NOT know… then he wasn’t actually doing what he SAID he would be doing, was he?

                      He TOLD his Captain ( Jesse Steed ) that he would be ‘listening for a call’ the entire time he was separated from them just in case they needed something ( anything ).

                      He also told ADOSH that HIS BK portable had its ‘priority channel’ set to the GM intra-crew frequency. All day. No question.

                      Yea… Brendan heard it all.
                      .

  11. WantsToKnowTheTruth says

    **
    ** TRANSCRIPT OF AARON HULBURD’S (FINAL?) VIDEO – M2U00278

    As it turns out… there IS some background conversation in this final video ( that we know of ) shot by Prescott off-the-radar hire Aaron Hulburd.

    This video is only 8.512 seconds long… but at the very end someone says…

    “The most lasting question will be…”

    The video abruptly CUTS OFF before the next word is even said.

    This video is *supposed* to be totally unredacted… but I actually find it highly unlikely that Aaron Hulburd would have cut his camera off at that exact moment OR that Hulburd would actually only shoot an 8.5 second video with his Helmet Camera. That wasn’t his ‘style’.

    The person who was speaking sounds very much like BR Captain Trueheart Brown.

    The voice is a ‘voice match’ for other recordings we have of Brown’s voice.

    * M2U00278 – Start: 1946 ( 7:46 PM ) ( Approx ) – Length: 8.512 seconds

    Short video shot near dark from back at the ‘descent point’.
    The video looks back across the box canyon, the Boulder Springs Ranch,
    and shows spot fires still burning over in the Glen Ilah area.

    For June 30, 2013… in Central Arizona…

    Sunrise: 5:22 AM
    Sunset: 7:42 PM

    From BR Captain Brown’s GPS data…

    1945 – 34.221022, -112.781755 – 0101.493 – 01.15 – Heading west back up to ridge
    1946 – 34.221279, -112.782115 – 0143.222 – 01.63 – Arrival back on two-track on top of ridge
    1947 – 34.221816, -112.782378 – 0209.375 – 02.38 – Heading northwest on two-track now

    TRANSCRIPT FOR M2U00278
    —————————————————
    Video length is 8.512 seconds

    +0:01
    (Foreground: Unknown): ( For the ?? )

    +0:06
    (Foreground: Unknown): The most lasting question’ll be… ( Video ends abruptly )
    —————————————————
    END OF VIDEO M2U00278

    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

      Followup…

      I think the actual ‘takeaway’ from the discovery of this ‘final’ (partial) statement in (supposedly) Aaron Hulburd’s final video from that day would be that this actually constitutes *evidence* that there were no ‘secret revelations’ down at the deployment site amongst the men who assembled there.

      Surely… as ANY of those firefighters were overlooking that scene the ‘lasting question’ in their minds was along the lines of “How in the HELL did they get caught HERE… and what the HELL were they trying to accomplish?”.

      I think that actually IS what got ‘cut off’ at the end of this video and what we would have heard Captain Brown actually say.

      No one was more involved in the discovery of the bodies and the sharing of information that took place shortly after that than Blue Ridge Captain Trueheart Brown.

      He was there at the site longer than any other (living) FF.
      He walked EAST to the BSR with all FIVE FFs and DPS Medic Eric Tarr.
      He was there at the BSR when the (three) ‘Incident Within an Incident’ people arrived.
      He walked these three IWI commanders BACK to the deployment site.
      He was THERE at the site as these IWI commanders had their own initial reactions.

      For Captain Brown to then arrive back up at the top of the ridge where they had left their UTV’s and still have this ‘question’ in his mind just seems to indicate that at NO time while he was DOWN there and interacting with all the other FFs and the IWI commanders did anyone really offer any kind of ‘explanation’ to that (quote) “lasting question”.

      I think if someone HAD… we would have never heard Brown making this comment that he does at the end of this Hulburd video.

  12. joy says

    here is some of the photos—the camera battery died in course of obtaining photos PLUS she was evicted today- some of the local horseshit that is going on…so she had to go but there is more because I saw them over in the Helm’s area so SHE IS A PERSON OF INTEREST TO SEE AGAIN HOPEFULLY because she was evicted and she does not have the capabilities to get the rest to me—just by chance I caught here at the Yarnell Library and she came to me—I try not to go to people the way the politics are rolling—I may suggest the YHF topic in certain spots but not in the Yarnell library…she had 213 in just the one file and only got 76 items off it of the YHF topic…
    the link file belongs to Yarnell resident just got evicted; Jolene Aikman Verizon 4GLte Beats Audio LTC really banged up phone.
    https://www.dropbox.com/s/jt66qfs77la0fbh/IMAG0052.jpg?dl=0

  13. joy says

    Bob Powers says
    DECEMBER 12, 2014 AT 9:01 PM

    Sonny or Joy

    Just for curiosity— Did anyone rehab the Dozer lines? Like water bars and seeding or are they as they left them??????

    The dozer line remains the same but Don Mason here in Yarnell said seeding was done throughout the community more in town vs state land areas.

    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

      Followup…

      >> On December 12, 2014 AT 9:01 PM, Bob Powers asked…
      >>
      >> Just for curiosity— Did anyone rehab the Dozer lines?
      >> Like water bars and seeding or are they as they left them??????

      On July 26, 2013, Arizona Forestry send some DOC crews to Yarnell to do some ‘rehab’… but their focus was only the deployment site itself. There had been heavy rains in the area and they were installing ‘water bars’ and over 400 sandbags to help keep the site from flooding.

      From KTAR ( Arizona ) article…

      Prison Firefighting Crew and Others Working to Protect Hallowed Ground in Yarnell

      http://ktar.com/22/1651407/Prison-firefighting-crew-and-others-working-to-protect-hallowed-ground-in-Yarnell

      From the article…
      ———————————
      YARNELL — Almost one month after the Yarnell Hill wildfire took the lives of 19 Granite Mountain hotshots, crews are at work trying to protect the site where they died from flooding out.

      Yarnell received heavy rain Friday. Jim Paxon with the Arizona State Forestry said a 20-person firefighting crew from Lewis Prison along with others from various state agencies have moved into the canyon to place 400 sandbags where the 19 firefighters deployed their shelters on June 30.

      “All of that water has to go somewhere,” Paxon said. “There’s no brush, grass, vegetation to hold the water back. This is steep country. It comes out of these canyons with a lot of velocity.”

      The prison crew helping deploy sandbags Friday was on the Yarnell Hill fire Saturday June 29 and worked through June 30. The Lewis crew is one of five prison firefighting teams. Four made up of all men, the other crew is all women.
      ———————————

      • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

        Same reporting as above… but THIS report actually has HELICOPTER footage of the actual work that was taking place out at the deployment site.

        You can see the flooding at the deployment site… and what they were trying to do about it. The ‘water bars’ that they also placed on the northwest side of the fenced area can still be seen in the current ‘Google Maps’ satellite imagery of the deployment site area.

        I count at least 30 or 32 men on the ground there in the HELICOPTER footage and at least 3 vehicles there at the deployment site.

        WBTV (3) News
        Yarnell Hill Fire: Sandbags Placed Near Firefighters’ Memorial
        http://www.wbtv.com/story/22942186/yarnell-residents-prepare-for-flooding

  14. joy says

    Marti-
    you will be PROUD. Sonny and I took the time out to learn how to dropbox…John Dougherty will be proud too.
    It is something we had not thought of because we simply just emailed you all the material and let you figure it out but the photos Jolene Aikman just started to download came on the pc and I have limited time before pc shuts down automatically so I am hurrying to figure out a way to get them up without having to remember email log-ins and so there you have it- her camera is broke and I can share that photo on Sunday of her phone condition.of the phone I took with my phone…all the files did not make it to pc but have no clue what yet came up but I finally have one completed task best we could due to her phone…yet she and I both saw more photos on her phone that we know DID NOT make it to the pc.
    Let me go figure out how to link the files to here.
    be back.

  15. sonny says

    State land, Private and only 3% Federal —I don’t think they had time to do much dozing once the fire blew up. It was encouraged with up to 45 mile per hour gusts and you can see those trees swaying from the winds. Considering that there is only about three miles from the actual place of beginning to Yarnell and that fired had worked it down the mountain a good mile toward Peeples Valley then it was within Yarnell probably only a couple miles by 2 PM. Now once that wind switched violently they said that burn was moving at about 11mph. That means Yarnell only had a window of about 10 minutes if that wind had went directly at Yarnell. It did not however, but was almost completely reversed as far as I could tell from where we were going over the mountain. I don’t have access to the wind pattern but it appears that it had a more south eastwarly direction at first but then mountains and those ridges in the lower elevations such as the ridge to the north of the basin and the ridge to the south of the basin would divide currents of wind and cause some turbulence so that directions down low would be differently divided than those currents going over the mountain. Going toward Yarnell then we see they would have had a bit more time than those men in the basin– that fire going uphill with the heat helping its progress directly toward those men had to be much faster than the fire going on the level and at an angle to Yarnell proper. I wonder if 11 mph is just what the state is saying or rather in fact that uphill draft of fire might have been more on the order of 22 mph. That would mean once they saw it coming at them from around the north ridge, the fire only had about 3/4 mile of burn and they had only 2 minutes at 22 mph or if the state is right at 11 minutes they had only 4 minutes. Looking at the brush they moved maybe an estimate could be made. My estimate would be that they only had time to make their way to the boulders– apparently

  16. Bob Powers says

    WTKTT—Brought this to the Top
    Gust wanted to note that at least 2/3 of this Fire was on private Land.
    It started on State and burned out into private so the fire overhead had some problems with any thing they did on the Private land. Actually building Dozer line north of Glen Isla was all private Not sure how many owners involved but they had a huge problem with just dg a 30 ft. Dozer push with out authority from land owners. It is crazy but on non public lands you are restrained by private property rules. Something I just started talking about today.

    I noted Sonny or Joy said something about a home owner that was upset with a Dozer push on his property. So I would assume some Private Property Owners would not allow a Dozer line thru their property, it happens a lot in wild land fire suppression. So their open land burns and you move on.

    As a wild land fire suppression organization you are tied to private property rules and it can be a huge road block. And can end in huge law suits if you just bowl thru private property regardless of the emergency.

    So I am saying just another thing that with out prior approval could stop a dozer line dead in its tracks. I did not realize how much private land was involved on this fire till I checked the Map.
    I would suggest the Team had a lot more problems.

    • Robert the Second says

      Check out this comprehensive and extensive document ( pages) titled “Wildland Fire Protection and Response in the United States – The Responsibilities, Authorities, and Roles of Federal, State, Local, and Tribal Government” compiled and written by The International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC), Donald K. Artley, Contractor, August, 2009.

      https://www.iafc.org/files/wild_MissionsProject.pdf

      Very informative and should shed some light on what Bob Powers is referring to.

      • Marti Reed says

        I just read through that report:

        “Wildland Fire Protection and Response in the United States – The Responsibilities, Authorities, and Roles of Federal, State, Local, and Tribal Government” compiled and written by The International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC), Donald K. Artley, Contractor, August, 2009.

        Thanks a lot for that post. Very interesting.

        Within the “Arizona Appendix” under

        Arizona State Forestry Division Wildland Fire Protection: (page 7 of the Appendix)

        It says, among a number of things:

        “Authorities:
        • Respond to wildfires on any lands in the state, regardless of whether or not an
        agreement is in place, if the State Forester determines that suppression actions are
        in the best interests of this state or are immediately necessary to protect state
        lands.
        • Enter private lands in performing fire suppression duties.”

        That sounds to me like the State Forester has the authority to

        • Enter private lands in performing fire suppression duties.”

        That sounds to me like it has the authority to put a dozer line where it deems necessary.

        • Marti Reed says

          It also says, just before that:

          “Responsibilities: Arizona Revised Statutes 37-623 (Suppression of wildfires; powers and duties of State Forester; entry on private lands.)
          • The State Forester has the responsibility for wildfire suppression outside of
          incorporated municipalities, subject to a cooperative agreement. If the State has a
          signed agreement with a local fire district or volunteer fire department, then it is
          required to provide services as defined in the agreement. Through its programs,
          the Forestry Division protects approximately 22.4 million acres of state and
          private lands.”

        • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

          Yep. No other way to read that other than basically Arizona Forestry Employees ( temp contractors included ) can basically do whatever the hell they want and they don’t need your permission.

          That will get interesting in the property damage lawsuits.

          Just because someone wrote that into some document… does that mean it is actually lawful and binding?

          • The Truth Will Always Remain Elusive says

            WTKTT said:

            Just because someone wrote that into some document… does that mean it is actually lawful and binding?

            Arizona Revised Statutes = the law of the land in Arizona

            • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

              Ah…okay… yes… thanks. I thought that was just in some IAFC document appendix or something but it does seem to be codified AZ law.

              I still under how these ‘ implied permissions’ are going to play out with the people that had their lots flattened ( without their permission ) AFTER the fire.

                • Bob Powers says

                  I do not know about Arizona but the FS and BLM
                  Go back after the fire and put in water Bars and reseed
                  Dozer lines and repair any other damages.

                  Also if Municipalities have any other written agreements with private property owners those as well have to be followed.

                  Good Catch Marti I did not see that last night so that would make a difference in Arizona and suppression Tactics.

                  • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                    Reply to Bob Powers post on
                    December 12, 2014 at 2:44 pm

                    >> Bob Powers said…
                    >>
                    >> I do not know about Arizona but the FS
                    >> and BLM Go back after the fire and put in
                    >> water Bars and reseed Dozer lines and
                    >> repair any other damages.

                    I don’t see anything in the Arizona Law that REQUIRES Arizona Forestry to do any of that…

                    http://www.azleg.gov/FormatDocument.asp?inDoc=/ars/37/00623.htm&Title=37&DocType=ARS

                    …but that doesn’t mean they don’t try.

                    I mean… c’mon. It’s the right thing to do once you willy-nilly tear up someone’s property due to some obscure line item in some obscure ‘fire fighting’ statute that very few Arizona property owners are probably even aware exists.

                    • Bob Powers says

                      Sonny or Joy

                      Just for curiosity— Did anyone rehab the Dozer lines? Like water bars and seeding or are they as they left them??????

          • Marti Reed says

            Yep. Statute. I think there’s various versions of that type of law on the books in various places. But, according to the report, it all varies a lot, also.

            Also, there WAS a “Yavapai County Community Wildfire Protection Plan” very much in place. It’s in “K- Reference Docs -no redactions.pdf.” It included Yarnell.

            I’m having some trouble finding anything more detailed about that, unfortunately, becuz I’m having trouble with the Adobe Reader plug-in for my Safari today, and I’m too busy doing other stuff to reboot.

            But that was the basis for the BLM 2009-2014 grant related to Yarnell’s unfinished fuels mitigation and defensive fire-line construction project.

            The nuance I’ve noticed is there is a difference between ASDF having “authority” and “responsibility.”

            Without a Wildfire Protection Plan, ASDF is only “authorized” to fight fires on private land. But it doesn’t HAVE to, unless it deems it essential to protect state interests.

            However, WITH a Wildfire Protection Plan, ASDF is “responsible” for fighting fire on private lands within that Wildfire Protection Plan. It’s legally REQUIRED for them to do that, via that statute.

            So given that, I’m guessing, when Yarnell joined the Yavapai County Wildfire Protection Plan, that WAS, as somebody here postulated, when the various private landholders were brought into that Agreement.

            Because, in order for the Plan to statutorily PROTECT them, they had to AGREE to the terms, i.e. ASDF not only COULD, but HAD TO, be able to operate on their land-holdings.

            So, no, they won’t be able to get any $$$ for dozer lines (or probably retardant dumps, either).

            And, probably (I would guess), that Plan would also protect ASFD from complaints about the ASFD Duty-Officer-Cum-Type4-Incident-Commander Musser exercising his authority and responsibiity to determine the nature and timing of the Initial Attack, no matter what the Congress Fire Department folks complained about later.

            I don’t know who it was (probably the Yarnell Fire Chief) who determined the fire was beyond the capability of local resources to respond to, and then called in the higher powers. But once that happened, it was ASFD’s game.

            By the way, when Yarnell entered into that Plan, it was Anderson who was the Fire Chief and was the point-man for Yarnell for making that happen.

            So there’s that.

            • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

              Acutal codified AZ legislation is here…

              http://www.azleg.gov/FormatDocument.asp?inDoc=/ars/37/00623.htm&Title=37&DocType=ARS

              Item G under this Article 1, Chapter 2.1 of
              Title 37 – Public Lands ) says…
              ——————————————
              G. The state forester may enter private lands in performing the duties under this section.
              ——————————————

              That would appear to only allow carte-blanche ENTRY onto provide lands but the ‘performing the duties under this section would automatically include the item ABOVE it…

              ——————————————
              A. The state forester shall have authority to prevent and suppress any wildfires on state and private lands located outside incorporated municipalities
              ——————————————

              So the SUPPRESS authority ( and whatever it takes to do that ) would automatically follow the ENTRY authority specifically established later on with Item G.

              Bottom Line: If there WAS any kind of ‘plan’ starting to come together late afternoon on June 30, 2013 to push more dozer line ( across private property ) to protect Glen Ilah… SPGS1 Gary Cordes ( or whoever was having the ‘idea’ and/or ‘plan’ ) didn’t need to waste one second worrying about obtaining any ‘permissions’.

    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

      Reply to Bob Powers post December 11, 2014 at 5:22 pm

      Mr. Powers… I am sure everything you are pointing out is true… and ‘by the book’., including the other stuff down below about EPA regulations, State Historic Societies, Archaeologists, and a host of other people all wanting to have ‘input’ before someone just starts digging up ground with a bulldozer. Makes sense.

      However… I also don’t see ANY evidence that ANYONE associated with fire command in Yarnell on June 30, 2013 ( and beyond ) gave one hoot in crap about ANY of that.

      Only thing that comes even remotely close is when the dozer came across that ‘locked white gate’ in the middle of that cutover road ( which ran through a lot of PRIVATE property )… instead of just destroying it… the dozer just blasted AROUND it and left the thing intact complete with lock and chain.

      The complaint you are referring to from down below came from Sonny… and it was about some property owners in the MIDDLE of the Glen Ilha subdivision returning from the long term evacuation and finding that someone had totally levelled their homesite with a dozer… destroying ANY chance of them recovering ANYTHING of value from it. They were not notified or informed or approached for ANY permission for them to do that.

      I believe that happened to any number of other property owners as they were ‘evacuated’ and away from their properties.

      And YES… I believe anyone who had that done to them is now part of the 100+ property damage lawsuits that have been filed.

      So.. can YOU find anything in the public record that indicates ANYONE in Yarnell was paying ANY attention to ANY of the things you are now ‘pointing out’ about how you are *supposed* to go about utilizing a dozer on a wildfire?

      I think this might be one more case where you are ( and rightly so ) pointing out what SHOULD have happened… but I still contend there were many, many things happening in Yarnell that were no where near CLOSE to being ‘by the book’.

      I think ‘the book’ was somewhere sitting with the ‘Action Plan’ and all the MAPS that should have been handed out to people working the fire.

      In other words… somewhere where no one could find it.

      Bottom line… I think if there HAD been a plan to push and emergency dozer line there to try and protect Yarnell… SPGS1 Gary Cordes was not going to give a shit about anything of the things you are saying he was supposed to. He would have ( excuse the pun ) PLOWED AHEAD ( no time to lose ) and dealt with any ‘whining’ after the fact.

      • Bob Powers says

        The Real problem is that all Fire agencies and their Teams are charged with these rules and if not followed are subject to law suits and removal of their ratings as type 1,2,3 Team overhead I can guarantee you on federal land if you do Dozer line it has to be cleared by Archeologists. If you cross private land you better have a written agreement with the land owner before you go thru fences or gates. with a dozer.

        If as you say they were just plowing ahead then the State is Liable for all damages
        Fire teams train not to do that and get access on private property.
        I trained and lived with this for 33 years you need to do some research before you jump off of that cliff.

        It is not what should be done but what is mandatory of wild land fire suppression responsibilities. In the west there are a lot of property owners that do not believe the Government all forms have any right on there property with out their express permission. Some areas wont even allow Dozers to build fire line and only Hand tools are allowed.

        So if you believe Arizona state Fire has a right to plow thru private property with out permission you are wrong and again all Teams are trained in working with the property owners. Why –To eliminate Law suits.

        • Retired with 38 says

          I hear what you are saying Bob, but I don’t believe this team eliminated lawsuits with their actions-or lack of.

          • Bob Powers says

            OK I can agree with that but they had to be operating under some kind of State protocol. I have understood the IC was well qualified and Certified.
            at the Type 2 level which means he had some certification training.

            To answer WTKTT below here.
            The Local Fire Marshal would be doing the contact and getting the permission that is usual the local county fire assignment but we do not have that info one way or the other.
            I doubt the public record would contain that info.
            Were the Fire Team suppose to do the pre work yes did thy on the dozer line they worked on most of the day I don’t know, It could have been a verbal with County Fire Marshal?
            Again Ball would not have been doing that under his job assignment. Or Cordis. The IC would be working with local County Fire Marshal or a person of that caliber to have them working with the private land owners to get what ever permission they needed.

            I would not know where to start looking if there is no agreement in the records.
            So I will bow to your superior Fire knowledge and your years of experience in building Line with Dozers and all of your previous experience with Coop agreements for Fire Suppression between agencies.
            Which by the way all of the above I have and IC Mouser has been trained as well. So if he was not following State Procedures and Team protocol then The state better have really deep pockets.

            I have a hard time believing the Team was operating in that fashion they had more experience than that. There is a lot more to Managing a Fire than just Fighting it. The Word Is MANAGE.

            • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

              >> Bob Powers said…
              >>
              >> The IC would be working with local County Fire Marshal
              >> or a person of that caliber to have them working with
              >> the private land owners to get what ever permission
              >> they needed.

              Copy that.

              Most of the two-tracks that they were trying to improve that day were actually ALREADY (originally) ‘cut’ as part of a ‘fire plan’ anyway.

              In his interview with InvestigativeMEDIA ( Specifically Mr. John Dougherty himself )… former Yarnell Chief Peter Andersen said those ‘two-tracks’ were cut some years before as the result of an evaluation of ‘evacuation routes’ in the event of a disaster such as exactly what was happening on June 30, 2013.

              That VIDEO interview is HERE on YouTube…
              https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UFObh-fNOl8

              Chief Andersen did a study and they realized that in the even of a really bad wildfire… they needed to have ‘alternate escape routes’ for citizens to either ‘escape’ from the Glen Ilah area up to the Yarnell area… or vice versa.

              So that is what that actual ‘Cutover Trail’ was all about… and it WAS cut through what is essentially all ‘private property’.

              So I am assuming when they cut that original ‘Cutover Trail’ between Sesame area and Shrine road… Chief Andersen DID have the time to obtain whatever ‘permissions’ were needed to do that.

              What I am wondering, then, is whether some of the property owners in the area actually did sign some kind of ‘standing agreements’ that in the case of an emergency… firefighters had some kind of ‘carte-blanche’ permission to do whatever they needed to do, when the time came.

              If those agreements were ‘on file’ with the Yarnell Fire Department… then the Yarnell Fire Chief on June 30, 2013 ( Jim Koile ) would probably have been already aware of them.

              As it turns out… we know now that Jim Koile had an assignment as the “Medical Officer’ for the Type 2 Short Team and he was stationed up there most of the day at the ICP at the Model Creek Elementary school.

              That’s where Roy Hall was ensconced in the principal’s office just totally absorbed with the resource ordering for TOMORROW.

              So I suppose its possible that if anybody ( like SPGS1 Gary Cordes ) was giving a crap about ‘permissions’ that day… he might have been able to just check with YFD Chief Jim Koile about it.

              I doubt it… but as you can see… even I’m not 100 percent sure there weren’t scenarios where it MIGHT have been happening.

              Rest assured that I UNDERSTAND your reluctance to admit that there was any possibility DIVSA Eric Marsh could have even been AWARE of this ‘thinking’ or ‘planning’ on SPGS1 Gary Cordes’ part for any kind of last-ditch effort there near Glen Ilah.

              There is NO direct evidence that DIVSA Eric Marsh even HEARD these ‘orders’ going out to HEQB Cory Ball… even though they WOULD have been ‘going out’ over a TAC channel that DIVSA should have been able to hear.

              There is also NO direct evidence (yet) that Gary Cordes made a cellphone call to DIVSA explaining ‘the plan’.

              I ( me, personally ) am just still keeping an ‘open mind’ about it and I am looking ( as you are ) for that ‘next piece of evidence’ that *might* shed more light on this.

              I believe it remains a *possible* explanation why 19 Hotshots *might* have been moving from an absolutely safe location to a place where they all ended up dying.

              • Bob Powers says

                WTKTT
                I needed a time out I was not cool last night and I apologize.
                You stated above what I was getting at. The Two traks could have been access areas agreed to with land owners and used to build Dozer lines. My main concern was just doing a Dozer push out thru the middle of no where following nothing.
                I am sure you hit on what I was getting at that there had been some local work to get agreements in place all I was saying that those agreements needed to be followed before Dozer lines were put in.
                So I will leave it there and move on but still looking for more facts to GM’s move.

                • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                  Copy that. No apology necessary.

                  This all got resolved up above as Marti found the actual Arizona LEGISLATION that allows Arizona Forestry to basically do whatever the hell they want WITHOUT having to obtain any pesky permissions from anyone at all.

                  That codified Arizona LAW is here…

                  http://www.azleg.gov/FormatDocument.asp?inDoc=/ars/37/00623.htm&Title=37&DocType=ARS

                  So the bottom line here is that IAOI ( If And Only If ) there really was any kind of real ‘plan’ coming together to push some emergency dozer line there to protect Glen Ilah in the late afternoon… SPGS1 Gary Cordes ( or whoever was really pushing ‘the plan’ ) didn’t have to waste one single second asking for any ‘permissions’.

                  Not in Arizona, anyway.

                  >> Bob Powers also said…
                  >>
                  >> So I will leave it there and move on but
                  >> still looking for more facts to GM’s move.

                  Me too.

            • Retired with 38 says

              yes – organize the choas, develop and impliment a plan based on solid strategy and tactics and manage the incident.

        • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

          Reply to Bob Powers post on December 11, 2014 at 7:10 pm

          >> Bob Powers said…
          >>
          >> So if you believe Arizona state Fire has a right to plow thru
          >> private property with out permission you are wrong and
          >> again all Teams are trained in working with the property
          >> owners. Why –To eliminate Law suits.

          Again… I am sure your ‘what SHOULD have happened’ information is totally correct. I am trying to point out to you what DID ( and did NOT ) happen on June 30, 2013.

          There is NO EVIDENCE SPGS1 Gary Cordes contacted ANY land owners in the Yarnell area for ANY of the ‘dozer work’ that was done that day… nor would he have bothered to do so for any *additional* dozer work, had he had the chance to order it done that afternoon.

          Zero. Zip. Nada.

          You can SEE exactly who owned all the parcels being bulldozed that day for ‘line work’. with an easy-to-use online tool…

          Yavapai County Tax Assessor’s Online Website
          Interactive Parcel Search/Information map.
          http://gis.yavapai.us/v4/

          You can just ‘zoom around’ all of Yavapai County, including all of Yarnell, and just ‘click’ on parcels to see who the registered owner is.

          ** THE ‘CUTOVER’ TRAIL ( BULLDOZED LINE BREAK )

          The EAST 3/4 of it was on ‘Private Land’ pacel 203-05-001A belonging to…

          Owner: S&P FAMILY TRUST
          Owner’s Mailing Address:
          13020 PACIFIC PROMENADE UNIT 405
          PLAYA VISTA, CA 900944020
          Secondary Owner: CHUNG JACKIE J SURVIVING TTEE

          The other WEST 1/4 of it was on ‘Private Land’ parcel 203-05-003H

          Owner: BALUCO TRUST
          Owner’s Mailing Address:
          PO BOX 98 YARNELL, AZ 853620098
          Secondary Owner: N/A

          The BALUCO TRUST parcel not only included the western 1/4 of the ‘Cutover Trail’… it also includes pretty much ALL of the ‘Sesame Clearing’ area where both the Granite Mountain and Blue Ridge Carriers were parked AND it extends down to that area to the south where the loboy trailer for the dozer was staged all day and where the Blue Ridge Chase Truck ( with UTV trailer ) was also staged all day.

          If the dozer had just started plowing land due southwest from where its loboy trailer was staged directly towards the Boulder Springs Ranch… there are basically only TWO private parcels it would been going through to make it all the way to the outcroppings at the northeast corner of the Boulder Springs Ranch.

          The parcel just due WEST of where the loboy was staged was…

          Parcel Number: 203-05-003E
          Owner: LICHTY JEFFREY W FAMILY TRUST
          Owner’s Mailing Address:
          8901 ALLEN RD CLARKSTON, MI 48348
          Secondary Owner: N/A

          There are NO STRUCTURES on that entire parcel. Just boondock.

          After going through that piece of property… the only parcel left that would have to be ‘touched’ to connect up to the BSR itself was, in fact, the northeast corner of the parcel that contains the Boulder Springs Ranch itself.

          Parcel Number: 203-05-003L
          Owner: HELM HUGH L & DIANE J JT
          Owner’s Mailing Address: PO BOX 128 YARNELL, AZ 85362
          Secondary Owner: N/A

          There is nothing in the public evidence record to indicate SPGS1 Gary Cordes, or HEQB Cory Ball, or ANYONE in fire command made ANY attempt to contact either the S&P FAMILY TRUST or the BALUCO TRUST owners when SPGS1 Cordes ordered the dozer to just start plowing ahead on THOSE pieces of private property…

          …so I doubt anything would have been any different down there to the southwest IAOI ( If And Only If ) they had ‘gone ahead’ with any plans to push a dozer line in THAT area.

          SPGS1 Gary Cordes would have probably just ‘given the word’ to go ahead ASAP ( just like he did with that ‘Cutover Trail’ late afternoon ) and Ball and the dozer would have just started ‘plowing’ that private property.

          I suppose all of this WILL come out when all the 100+ property damage suits have their day in court… and the property owners who had their private property all torn to shit with a bulldozer that day can try to recover for those specific damages…

          …but on THAT day ( June 30, 2013 )… SPGS1 Gary Cordes was NOT doing any of the ‘checking’ that you say is ‘mandatory’.

          He just WASN’T.

          PS: Unless YOU can find any evidence of that in the public record.
          I can’t… but if you find anything like that please let me know… including ( perhaps? ) some kind of ‘standing property owners agreement’ that they had to sign to allow this work to take place, if needed, WITHOUT their permission, or something?

          I am ready to be 100 percent wrong here ( but I don’t think I am ).

            • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

              Saw it. Thank you, Marti.

              It was a ‘side issue’ but an important one.

              Bottom line is NO ONE had to waste one single second worrying about an ‘permissions’ that day. They could have pushed dozer line anywhere they wanted… any TIME they wanted.

              Just point at the ground and tell the dozer to GO.

    • Joy A. Collura says

      reply to Bob Power’s: “I noted Sonny or Joy said something about a home owner that was upset with a Dozer push on his property. So I would assume some Private Property Owners would not allow a Dozer line thru their property, it happens a lot in wild land fire suppression. So their open land burns and you move on.”
      —————————————
      The URL to view this parcel on the map is:

      http://gis.yavapai.us/V4/map.aspx?search=203-04-081

      and you can see seven properties between their place and the Helm’s so it was just odd they had damage done by bulldozer due to location of their home and who to go to for asking so I printed up state land foia and start there on a few topics. Gosh it does add up the funds for anyone who has bought FOIA information- God Bless you all because it can add up over time—huh—

      I did post many times since this comment made it by Bob Powers days ago but I see it never made it here the update so I quickly did it by emails and some typos happened due to copy and paste that was originally to “J&D” but others got it thinking when I said “ugly J&D” some thought I had a concern with them. Nope just never changed their names to yours—simple error. I am confused by the recent topic with YFD but I am letting go as of yesterday for one someone who knows the individual feels it was not a ploy and I respect that person’s opinion and well because Brian Murphy cancelled his doctor appointment to support us at meeting —I let Pete Andersen and Dr. Leroy Anderson know I am going to the meeting after all. If anyone has questions for the local YFD- email me them so I can point it out Monday.

  17. Robert the Second says

    As of last week, Brendan McDonough has obtained a Criminal Attorney, and he is working with the AZ State Attorney General. We may see something about this by mid to late January, at the earliest.

    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

      Thanks, RTS. I can’t really think of a good reason why Brendan would feel the need to retain a ‘Criminal Attorney’, unless the counsel he had just isn’t all that familiar with actual court proceedings and whatnot.

      Only scenario I can think of is that Brendan really does NOT want to have to actually ‘testify’ at any court proceeding(s) ( and be subject to any direct questioning and/or cross-examination ) and he is just trying to go the ‘deposition only’ route… but the attorneys for the plaintiffs are NOT fully agreeing to that.

      It could also be that Brendan is still trying to maintain ( like he did with all his media interviews ) that there are some things he absolutely will refuse to talk about and/or some questions he might be asked that he is absolutely going to refuse to answer.

      That gets problematic in terms of being called to the witness stand.

      You can ONLY assert your 5th amendment rights if you feel the testimony you are being asked to supply will, in some way, tend to ‘self-incriminate’.

      You CANNOT invoke your own 5th amendment rights just because you don’t want to reveal something you know or because you have your own ‘agenda’ and you are trying to ‘protect’ someone ELSE.

      That can result in actual ‘contempt of court’ charges… and maybe the counsel Brendan had just didn’t feel fully ‘up to speed’ in that area. A Criminal Attorney would be.

      Who knows.

      I suppose we’ll find out.

      It is NOT looking very likely that the Arizona Attorney General’s request to the Arizona District Court that the ‘wrongful death’ suits be ‘dismissed’ is going to be successful.

  18. Sonny says

    I was trying to imagine where that dozer line could have been to protect Glen Isla– There was the old dozer track that went west from the Helms place past the pond just to the west of Helms that went up a narrow canyon still continuing up the canyon. That actually was the two track that had been bulldozed back when the 67 or 68 fire had happened.

    Yes there was no way they could have made it– that canyon behind the cattle pond was extremely steep and narrow–a perfect funnel and as near as that fire was at even 1;30 OR 1330 if you prefer–their chances of getting the dozer operation out of that canyon in time would have been slim to none.. But indeed that must have been their thinking if Steed dropped down to meet Marsh.

    Seems indeed they were thinking that from they could maybe do something by dozing from the Helms that direction, and then all hell broke loose in a different direction when the wind switched channels– what were those men thinking?

    They heard the weather reports then crossed their fingers and in spite of seeing all hell had broken loose early before 1100 hours on Sunday went down to play Russian roulette. It was simply that the atom bomb had happened early but those fellows really had believed their feeble attempts to outwit nature would suffice to save a few structures–as Donut would put it, those fire regulations are hill billy, yet this old hill billy would say they make hillbilly sense to me–we can defy gravity that is perhaps somewhere between earth and the moon.

    Joy and I will attend the next fire meeting. Seems that we have been getting a lot of flack lately for our participation–Hiking people up there–a crime to several in the cadre here–They can commit a crime of hiking without passes–we have ours legal as all get out–yet many of these hike without what the law requires–Joy has photos of certain people that are complete law breakers on that matter–yet these authorities seem to be beyond the law themselves.

    Seems like a set up after all–but it might backfire.

    Whew we hear that one of these fellows even wanted to sue the United Way because they could not hold the free stuff they gave him longer than a year. Talk about an ingrate.

    Joy and I delivered almost 500 United Way packages to people who were in Yarnell. Because we had a truck at the time, we delivered furniture, etc free of charge. United Way was good enough to give us gas vouchers in some instances on that.

    There were people out of Prescott, Chris. Crystal, Laura, Meredith, Dawn, Jack, and many others I cannot name who freely gave of their time and money and vehicles to help those that had either lost homes or just needed help after the fire. Talk about United Way, and these people were the first to step up to the plate, even providing motel rooms and temporary housing for some. The Red Cross did much as well and took care of those in shelters after being evacuated. We enjoyed some of that help ourselves during evacuation–maybe we paid back some by our efforts after Yarnell and Peeples Valley were opened up again.

    We even got evicted from my Oak Park Motel apartment #15 because our work was not sanctioned by the manager there. She kicked out a total of nine–Did they think they would be able to up the rent because of construction worker influx?
    Cris and another man from United Way witnessed the eviction and could not believe how some people can be so hard hearted during a tragedy. Joy and I stayed on the desert after that and I remained homeless for about a year after–but we were resourceful and are back.

    That is life, and we wonder how people can cover up so much in a tragedy.

    But now we have a local fire department that resents our hiking people up in the area to access this thing? They ought to be ashamed of that. This nation is built on freedom to know and investigate the truth–when authority become awry the people need to know. To hide the routes and what was done on that mountain and the errors of that day would be a travesty.

    In instances where people who are directly involved in uncovering and concerning themselves with what really went on were denied accessibility to the area and came to us–we hiked them indeed and indeed will hike more.. They needed to know the routes and what took place there, when and where–the why they want to know and are like the people on this site are getting to it.

    Those that we hiked that do not contribute here, none the less, watch this site and use the information they are getting here. Several are journalists, some are investigators and others are loved ones and friends who are damned tired of the BS they have been fed by those that had their own agendas or else were afraid of loss.

    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

      Reply to Sonny post December 11, 2014 at 11:11 am

      >> Sonny said…
      >>
      >> I was trying to imagine where that dozer line could have been
      >> to protect Glen Isla– There was the old dozer track that went west
      >> from the Helms place past the pond just to the west of Helms that
      >> went up a narrow canyon still continuing up the canyon. That actually
      >> was the two track that had been bulldozed back when the 67
      >> or 68 fire had happened.

      Well… since SPGS1 Gary Cordes never once even mentioned that he told Blue Ridge Hotshot Coy Ball ( who was acting HEQB assigned to the dozer that day ) to do this ‘scouting’ for a last minute defensive dozer push… and the ADOSH investigators never had a chance to even ASK him any questions about it…

      …we really don’t know what SPGS1 Gary Cordes might have even had in mind.

      Cordes had ‘scouted’ that general area the night before… but it was pitch dark.

      However… the morning briefing… we KNOW that Gary Cordes was looking over satellite maps of that area with Eric Marsh… because THAT is when Cordes pointed out the Boulder Springs Ranch to Marsh and TOLD him it was his ‘predetermined safety zone’ that day.

      So we don’t know what kind of ‘mental map’ SPGS1 Gary Cordes really had of the area… but he DID take at least one good look at it that morning on actual SATELLITE maps.

      The thing to remember is that all this ‘line building’ stuff is NOT usually designed to stop a fireline dead in its tracks. It is usually ‘designed’ to just influence the MOVEMENT of a fireline and try to make it go AROUND things, if at all possible.

      Example: Even all that dozer work on the ‘Cutover Trail’ and the work being done in Harper Canyon by those 6 firefighters ( who also almost lost their lives that day ) was not designed to stop the oncoming fireline ‘dead in its tracks’. All that work was being done in the hopes of redirecting the fireline out to the natural firebreak that was Highway 89 itself.

      There is actually PROOF in the ‘evidence record’ that this is exactly what the Blue Ridge Hotshots thought they were doing with that ‘Cutover Trail’ dozer line work.

      The following is from Blue Ridge Captain Trueheart Brown’s official ‘Unit Log’.

      Here he is describing this late afternoon assignment from SPGS1 Gary Cordes to create a ‘line’ along that ‘Cutover Trail’ that connected the Sesame clearing area over to the Youth Camp on Shrine Road.

      Notice that Captain Brown points out that the real OBJECTIVE was to just try to get the fire to ‘skirt along’ that line and HERD it ( redirect it ) out to Highway 89…

      ——————————————————————————
      (SPGS1 Gary Cordes) calls and requests the dozer to put in a piece of line off the main 2 track to the north that will tie into a road called Shrine by the Youth Camp.

      (HEQB Cory Ball and the dozer ) finishes this assignment.

      I get the crew lined out ( on the dozer line ).

      I continue hiking ( to the east ) as the crew begins working.

      My intent was to get to a high point on a rock area to the north of the Dozer line / Youth Camp and see if there was any way to get fire AROUND the structures and out to Highway 89 OFF the dozer line.

      This was our current thinking at the time.

      To bring fire down the original 2 track to the north and then HERD it AROUND
      the town and OUT to the Highway.
      ————————————————————————–

      So I imagine whatever Gary Cordes might have been thinking or planning for Glen Ilah was similar.

      It was how to try to get the fire to go AROUND the Glen Ilah subdivsion instead of passing right THROUGH it.

      If you look at a satellite map of the Glen Ilah area… you can easily see that ‘clearing’ at the south end of the Sesame area where the bulldozer ‘loboy’ trailer was staged. This is where the dozer itself is believed to have been ‘staged’ at the time when Gary Cordes told HEQB Cory Ball to ‘scout out a dozer line’ in that area to try and protect Glen Ilah.

      This ‘clearing’ is right there just west of the point where the paved part of both Lakewood and Manzanita ends and then becomes that ‘dirt’ road heading north into the Sesame area.

      Just west ( and a little south ) of that clearing is fairly wide ‘dry creek bed’. THAT *could* have been used as part of the defensive line at that time. That ‘dry creek bed’ goes WEST for a few hundred yards and then there is a point where there is a ‘clearing’ that could have connected SOUTH directly to the DRIVEWAY of the Boulder Springs Ranch itself.

      The satellite images show that the long, totally cleared DRIVEWAY leading out to the Boulder Springs Ranch itself would have been an excellent fire break. It was already wider than anything that had been being considered an adequate ‘firebreak’ at any other time that day… including the ‘Cutover Trail’ that the dozer had already pushed over to the Youth Camp.

      Would it have worked?

      Who knows. There was eventually so much SPOTTING associated with that fire moving into the Glen Ilah area that its doubtful any kind of ‘dozer line’ would have made any difference…

      …but that doesn’t mean it wouldn’t at least have beeb a valid PLAN circa 1600 ( 4:00 PM ) and before that fire blew up like an atom bomb.

      If Cory Ball hadn’t gotten ‘sidetracked’ and ‘hung up’ over in Yarnell while delivering the Blue Ridge Chase Truck over to the Ranch House Restaurant… and they had ‘gone ahead’ with this emergency dozer push… it certainly wouldn’t have been the first ‘assignment’ that day that didn’t look like it had much of a chance of stopping anything… but they were working hard on it, anwyay.

  19. Joy A. Collura says

    http://prescott.craigslist.org/lbg/4753853341.html

    I went to craigslist to read any ad I had on this 2014 and none of them say we will take anyone to any site where the men died.

    people, people, people.

    I truly would love for you to come forward and place your full name being you had NO PROBLEM involving YOUR slander/misinformation to the YCSO and them taking YOUR WORD to the extent when I said whoever told them gave her misinformation and she said “are you calling me a liar?” so really whoever you are you might THINK you have clout being you have the YCSO stand strong with you but I know the law and I did nothing wrong.

    I also know some think they are above the law…but hey I am not going to be bullied in this topic—no way!

    Come forward, coward!

  20. Joy A. Collura says

    We have a craigslist ad looking for misc things and we got a reply from a woman in Humboldt…when we get there to get items—SMALL WORLD—her son is married to Darrell Willis’s daughter and we learned some good stuff from her that we know we are on the right path…Higher ups, time for you to SPEAK UP! Can’t you see how God is orchestrating this…too funny! Now I can see why the confusion and diversion and local damage/destruction CREATION being done on the hikers…almost have to get this higher ups—you may have power and all but you DO NOT have the ALMIGHTY power that God is showing in His time!

  21. Marti Reed says

    HedzUp.

    JD just posted, two days ago:

    M2U00262.MPG

    M2U00263.MPG

    M2U00264.MPG

    M2U00266R.mp4

    For those who would rather look at “the originals” than downloads from YouTube.

    PS I”ve been reading everything you all have been writing today, but haven’t had the time to reply to much of anything.

    • Marti Reed says

      And thanks, all of you, for your responses to my question regarding “Slow Down, Skippy!!!”

      I’m definitely reading them and definitely thinking about them.

    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

      Thanks for the Hedzup Marti.

      I’m about to publish TIMESTAMPS for pretty much all 21 of the newly released Aaron Hulburd videos.

      The ones that have ANY glimpse ( or presence ) of the Blue Ridge Polaris Ranger have always been pretty much a ‘no brainer’ to timestamp. We have actual GPS satellite times for those because of BR Captain Brown’s constantly updating GPS unit.

      The ones where the Blue Ridge Polaris Ranger is actually MOVING have always been the easiest to timestamp.

      That’s because of the way the GPS unit updating works.

      It was only updating every 60 seconds all day… but when the timer expires and it goes to grab another satellite update… that only takes a fraction of a second.

      So when the Polaris is MOVING and an GPS update happens… you can be sure that the exact position of the unit at that moment matches the exact Lat/Long that ends up in the update.

      It’s only when the GPS Unit is NOT moving when you have to add the +/- 59 second ‘fudge factor’ to the timestamp.

      When the GPS unit has gone from ‘moving’ to ‘stationary’… you can’t ever really be sure WHEN it actually went ‘stationary’. It might have been 1 second after the last GPS update… or the new update might have only happened some 57 or 58 seconds AFTER the unit became stationary.

      The new Hulburd videos that do NOT feature the Blue Ridge Polaris Ranger in them have been a little trickier to timestamp… but pretty much ALL of them have had at least one ‘anchor event’ depicted in them that is verifiable with other evidence with known timestamps.

      A strange picture is emerging with these ‘timestamps’.

      As already discussed… there are times when, based on what we can SEE Aaron Hulburd’s habit was as a ‘videophile’… there is no real logical explanation why he would ‘cut off’ his filming at some of the points where we are being led to believe he did.

      Example: I can see no reason why we are NOT seeing video of the actual Granite Mountain Crew Carriers evacuating ahead of that last Blue Ridge Crew Carrier other than to think someone at US Forestry just didn’t want the families to SEE the Granite Mountain Crew Carriers passing by Hulburd’s camera EMPTY.

      We KNOW that was ‘visible’ because in at least TWO places in the videos we CAN see… KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell and Aaron Hulburd report that they ‘only say drivers’ in the GM Crew Carriers as they passed by.

      More later.

      • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

        Crap. Typo above in the last paragraph. I typed ‘say’ instead of ‘saw’.

        Should have been…

        We KNOW that was ‘visible’ because in at least TWO places in the videos we CAN see… KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell and Aaron Hulburd report that they ‘only SAW drivers’ in the GM Crew Carriers as they passed by.

    • Robert the Second says

      SR,

      My pleasure. Thanks, but since you are allegedly RTS and I am also RTS, then aren’t we merely thanking ourselves?

    • Joy A. Collura says

      reply to SR says DECEMBER 10, 2014 AT 5:04 PM Joy, keep your chin up with the issues there.
      ————–
      After talking with Theresa, G.E. gave us a lawyer who goes up against state and federal folks so it was very refreshing that same day to get such solid free legal advice for this upcoming meeting and indeed we will do as the person states. That person was intelligent beyond my own capabilities and I understand every point made and I will follow it. Makes perfect sense.

      I emailed just a couple people some of the snap shots of people and vehicles and lic plates and paperwork because its not needed on here as we are just trying to let a few know we know we are being followed and the recent local stuff just awfully sad not needed because it has already caused division in some areas that hopefully does not jeopardize Sonny’s living arrangements over the one-sided information and just very sad.

      SR- my chin is up. Smiles. I just did not know that moment what to do when someone “creates” a bad situation and it only has to be if there is an agenda behind it all is our take.

  22. WantsToKnowTheTruth says

    Reply to calvin post on December 9, 2014 at 1:48 pm

    NOTE: This exchange has been brought up from down below…

    It contains a NEW transcript of yet another moment in the newly released Aaron Hulburd videos when Blue Ridge SUP Brian Frisby was telling “The Three Prescotteers” why Granite Mountain wasn’t in the Crew Carriers as they saw them go by.

    —————————————————————————
    On December 9, 2014 at 4:00 am, calvin said…

    Wtk. It appears that Eric started scouting south around 1530, possibly. And I think it is possible that he was petty far south by the time MacKenzie shoots the video where we hear Steed updating him on the fires progression. I think that it is possible that the plan was actually developed around 1530. And I would also venture a guess that marsh was included in formulating the plan. By cell phone?

    On December 9, 2014 at 10:31 am, WTKTT responded…

    Calvin… make no mistake… I have ALWAYS thought this idea of last minute dozer line being directly related to why GM suddenly ‘gaggled up’ and left the safe black is totally possible… but where are you getting the idea that Marsh might have already been scouting SOUTH as early as 1530?

    On December 9, 2014 at 1:48 pm, calvin responded…

    Wtk. I am thinking that Frisby didn’t leave to go toe in with Eric until after Eric decided to go scout the trail to the south.. this comes per Frisby s account he gives to the prescotteers in the new video. I can’t remember the number off the top of my head
    ———————————————————————–

    calvin… thanks for the good response. Yes. I know what you are referring to there.

    That was Hulburd video M2U00271 shot after Frisby and Brown had returned to the St. Joseph Shrine parking lot following the deployment and they were now on the ‘ground rescue mission’ and had just met up with the ‘Three Prescotteers’ again ( Jason Clawson, Aaron Hulburd, and KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell ).

    Here is that exchange… with the final quote from Frisby I believe you are referring to…

    HULBURD VIDEO M2U00271
    ——————————————————–
    +0:00
    (Unknown – Jason Clawson?): Ask them if the black plume is where they are.

    +0:02
    ( OPS2 Paul Musser ): …point just… uh… (down) here in Yarnell.

    +0:13
    (Unknown – Aaron Hulburd?): How many were in there?

    +0:21
    (Brian Frisby): They were sittin’ in cold black.

    +0:23
    (Trueheart Brown): They were in black.

    +0:25
    (Uknown – Aaron Hulburd?): (So) THAT’S what they were talking about? (The) Lookout?

    +0:28
    (Brian Frisby): No. No. (He’s) in black…

    +0:30
    (Unknown – KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell): ( Overlapping with Frisby ) I heard that (one).

    +0:31
    (Brian Frisby): …and Eric decided that the trail that kinda follows that ridge…
    green… goes around. That lookout was down below. I went in to go tie in with Eric… and that’s when it picked up. I just happened to stumble upon the lookout… without
    the… uh… I grabbed him. ( He’s out ).
    ————————————————————–

    I can see what you are saying… but I’m honestly not sure myself that report from Frisby establishes anything ( TIME wise ) for when Marsh might have done anything in particular.

    Can you explain a little more why you think it might?

    Are you thinking the reason Frisby said this is because that’s what Marsh told him when he was asking him to come up for that second face-to-face? That WAS, in fact, circa 1530.

    ** THE ‘OTHER’ REPORT FROM FRISBY ABOUT GRANITE MOUNTAIN

    What has actually been missed so far ( by everyone, it seems ) is that the transcript above is not the FIRST time in the new Hulburd videos where we can hear Brian Frisby explaining to Clawson, Hulburd and Yowell where he believes Eric Marsh and Granite Mountain were… and what they were doing.

    Video M2U00271 is actually the SECOND time ( in the new Hulburd videos ) when we hear BR SUP Brian Frisby telling the “Three Prescotteers” about Granite Mountain.

    When Frisby and Brown first ‘drove up’ to the St. Joseph Shrine parking lot and first met up with Clawson, Hulburd and Yowell… Jason Clawson asks Frisby right away “Where’s Jesse? We didn’t see ’em in the buggies”… and Frisby tells Clawson where he thought Jesse Steed and GM were at that moment and what they were doing.

    This exchange comes at the very END of Hulburd video M2U00264.

    It’s hard to hear because it is part of the ‘overspeak’ that was going on as these 5 men were greeting each other. They were all sort of speaking ‘on top of each other’… but if you listen very closely you can hear pretty much everything that is said in and around the Blue Ridge Polaris Ranger that Frisby and Brown just pulled up in.

    This ‘excerpt’ starting at +3:07 into video M2U00264 is the moment when Frisby and Brown have just pulled up to the “Prescotteers’ in the Polaris Ranger. The transcript goes to the END of video M2U00264 when Hulburd’s video abruptly ( and still, inexplicably ) ‘cuts off’…

    —————————————————————————–
    +3:07 ( 1636.30 / 4:36.30 )
    (Foreground: KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell): (Greeting the Blue Ridge Polaris Ranger UTV as it arrives at the St. Joseph Shrine parking lot with BR SUP Brian Frisby and BR Captain Trueheart Brown onboard )

    What time is it? Is it dark, or what?

    +3:08 ( 1636.31 / 4:36.31 )
    (Foreground: BR Captain Trueheart Brown): It IS dark ( up here ).

    +3:09 ( 1636.32 / 4:36.32 )
    (Foreground: KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell): How ya doin’, guy?

    +3:12 ( 1636.35 / 4:36.35 )
    (Foreground: BR Captain Trueheart Brown): Fuckin’ makin’ sure idiots aren’t burnin’ themselves out. God DAMN.

    +3:14 ( 1636.37 / 4:36.37 )
    (Foreground: Aaron Hulburd): We figured you guys were bringin’ up ( the rear ).

    ——————————————————————–
    NOTE: The following conversation is taking place underneath
    what KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell and Aaron Hulburd are saying to BR
    Captain Brown. It appears to be Jason Clawson asking BR SUP
    Brian Frisby where ‘Jesse Steed’ and GM are since they didn’t
    see them in the GM buggies as they drove by moments before
    this… and Frisby tells him…
    ——————————————————————–
    +3:16 ( 1636.39 / 4:36.39 )
    (Foreground: Jason Clawson?): ( To Frisby): Where’s Jesse? We didn’t seem ’em in the buggies.

    NOTE: The words ‘in the black’ are clearly heard in Frisby’s response but whatver he says after ‘tryin’ to’ is lost as he seems to turn away from Hulburd’s camera/microphone.

    +3:18 ( 1636.41 / 4:36.41 )
    (Foreground: BR SUP Brian Frisby): They’re in the black right now tryin’ to ??
    ——————————————————————–

    +3:17 ( 1636.40 / 4:36.40 )
    (Foreground: Aaron Hulburd): (To Brown): So everybody’s out?

    +3:18 ( 1636.41 / 4:36.41 )
    (Foreground: BR Captain Trueheart Brown): Yea. We’re the last.

    +3:22 ( 1636.45 / 4:36.45 )
    (Unknown): ( Someone says something here to Brown the he is going to agree with )

    +3:23 ( 1636.46 / 4:36.46 )
    (Foreground: BR Captain Trueheart Brown?): Yup.

    +3:25 ( 1636.48 / 4:36.48 )
    (Foreground: KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell): How long ya been here? Days?

    +3:27 ( 1636.50 / 4:36.50 )
    (Foreground: BR Captain Trueheart Brown): Nah… we just got here this mornin’

    +3:29 ( 1636.52 / 4:36.52 )
    (Foreground: KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell): Holy shit.

    +3:30 ( 1636.53 / 4:36.53 )
    (Foreground: BR Captain Trueheart Brown): Yeah.

    +3:31 ( 1636.54 / 4:36.54 )
    (Foreground: KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell): ( Laughs )
    ——————————————————————–
    VIDEO M2U00271 ABRUPTLY CUTS OFF

    This is the relevant exchange near the end of M2U00271…
    ——————————————————————-
    +3:16 ( 1636.39 / 4:36.39 )
    (Foreground: Jason Clawson?): ( To Frisby): Where’s Jesse? We didn’t seem ’em in the buggies.

    +3:18 ( 1636.41 / 4:36.41 )
    (Foreground: BR SUP Brian Frisby): They’re in the black right now tryin’ to ??
    ——————————————————————–

    So this is Frisby reporting ( directly to Jason Clawson ) more about ‘Jesse’ and GM than Eric Marsh, per se… but it’s interesting to note that even as Frisby was evacuating out to the Ranch House Restaurant… he was convinced that Granite Mountain was still ‘in the black’..

    Frisby really does ‘turn away’ from Hulburd’s microphone right as he is sayng ‘now tryin’ to…’,
    and I don’t see any possibility of recovering any more words there in the audio track.

    I don’t even have a good guess there about what might have followed “now tryin’ to…’

    Do you?

    Remember… we are only about 90 seconds away from Jesse Steed’s first MAYDAY at this moment in time.

    • calvin says

      I think it is possible that marsh was asking Frisby back up for a reason. I do not think a case could be made that marsh was calling Frisby up there to tell him GM was committed to the black. It would seem logical that he called him up for planning. Where on the fire had a better view of what was happening? Yes. I think that it makes sense (personally) that marsh was calling Frisby up to look at the place the new dozer line should go. And we hear Frisby state. Eric decided a trail, I went to tie in, and then picked up lookout. That seems to establish a time for when Frisby heard Eric was moving, and it was when he called him up for a face to face meeting.

      • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

        Reply to calvin post on December 10, 2014 at 4:42 am

        >> calvin said…
        >>
        >> I think it is possible that marsh was asking Frisby back up for a reason.

        Yes. Actually… that’s a given. There’s no way he would have been asking Frisby to drop what he was doing all the way down there and eat dust and schlep all the way back up to that ridge unless he wanted to SHOW him something ( like an idea or a plan only best viewed from Marsh’s location on the ridge ).

        I have also (personally) never thought Frisby would consent to such a ‘trip’ up there unless he had also been given some idea what it was about… or Marsh had already indicated to Frisby something like “I can’t just tell you what I am thinking of doing… you have to come up here so I can SHOW you”.

        That ‘reason’ for the face-to-face *might* be one of the REDACTED sections in Frisby’s Unit Log.

        I also think that whatever radio frequency this request from Marsh for that second face-to-face took place on… there must have been others who heard it to a greater extent than the current testimony would indicate.

        If Frisby really did have Marsh’s intra-net frequency… it’s possible that is where the ‘request’ took place… which means Brendan McDonough probably heard all of this exchange.

        >> calvin also wrote…
        >>
        >> I do not think a case could be made that marsh was calling Frisby
        >> up there to tell him GM was committed to the black.

        Agree. Not a chance.

        It had to be about some kind of ‘last ditch effort’ plan, or something.

        Some kind of mano-e-mano “Hotshot to Hotshot” type business.

        >> calvin also said…
        >>
        >> It would seem logical that he called him up for planning.
        >> Where on the fire had a better view of what was happening?

        Agree. Something related to the FIRE and what else they *might* be able to do about it given the new ( fast developing ) situation.

        >> calvin also said…
        >>
        >> Yes. I think that it makes sense (personally) that marsh was
        >> calling Frisby up to look at the place the new dozer line should go.

        This is the ‘new’ part of this… and I agree. It’s possible this new ‘dozer push’
        was what Eric wanted to talk about… but he never go the chance to be that specific over the radio when requesting the face-to-face… so Frisby never really knew that is what the meeting was going to be about because he never made it up there for that ‘show and tell’.

        >> calvin also said…
        >>
        >> And we hear Frisby state. Eric decided a trail, I went to tie in,
        >> and then picked up lookout. That seems to establish a
        >> time for when Frisby heard Eric was moving, and it was when
        >> he called him up for a face to face meeting.

        I do see exactly where you are ‘coming from’ now… but I’m still not sure I see the direct line of reasoning that this would prove Marsh was ‘already scouting south’ circa 1530.

        Again… what Frisby actually said was…

        +0:31
        (Brian Frisby): …and Eric decided that the trail that kinda follows that ridge…
        green… goes around. That lookout was down below. I went in to go tie in with Eric… and that’s when it picked up. I just happened to stumble upon the lookout… without the… uh… I grabbed him. ( He’s out ).

        I think only Frisby himself could say what he was really TRYING to say at that moment. It ended up an ‘incomplete thought’.

        He could have been referring to just what Frisby showed him when he was up there at NOON… that they had this ‘escape route’ on that trail that ‘goes around’ if they needed it.

        • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

          Whoops… typo above. I meant to say…

          He (Frisby) could have been referring to just what Marsh showed him when he was up there at NOON… that they had this ‘escape route’ on that trail that ‘goes around’ if they needed it.

          • Bob Powers says

            What I am seeing is Marsh wanting to talk 1 on 1 with Frizby to determine if they can tie in there respective lines in time to keep the fire in check

            which in short order was answered for them with the fire pushing out the GM lookout and looking like a solid wall of flame.

            So I think the discussion between Marsh and Frisby was that the line was not going to get tied in and his crew would move GM vehicles with McDonough.
            A Fairley simple exchange at that point.

            Since BR had an ATV it made it fairly easy to get together and discuss the Fire and their options. They could have got together in 10 minuets or less. That is very fast when you need to discuss you options.

            • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

              Reply to Bob Powers post on December 10, 2014 at 4:17 pm

              >> Bob Powers said…
              >>
              >> What I am seeing is Marsh wanting to talk 1 on 1 with
              >> Frizby to determine if they can tie in there respective
              >> lines in time to keep the fire in check

              There is evidence to prove that was NOT the case.

              Marsh DID want to talk to Frisby… but only AFTER it became clear that they were NOT going to be able to ‘tie in their respective lines’.. Marsh did not request this mysterious second face-to-face until AFTER Jesse Steed announced that GM would need at least another HOUR to finish that original project.

              From page 8 of the SAIT Investigation Notes.
              SAIT Interview with Frisby, Brown, Fueller, Ball.
              At this point.. the NOTES seem to indicate that it is Captain Trueheart Brown speaking since he is talking about what ‘Brian’ ( or just ‘B’ ) was doing. It’s hard to tell any TIMES at all from the SAIT interview notes, but this ‘section’ is appearing in roughly the 1530 timeframe…
              ——————————————————–
              Brian tries to contact GM several times, GM direct 3 or 4x Brian passed on to Jesse there plan of Gm securing there piece to the 2 track. Jesse says we have about another hr before we are tied into the 2 track. Eric copy’s and says yes that’s a good plan, head back up here let’s do a face-to-face. B says ok.
              ———————————————————

              So according to this ‘sequence’ in the notes… Brian Frisby called out to Jesse Steed himself about the possibility of GM securing what they had been doing up there down to the two-track… and Jesse Steed came right back and said they would need at least another HOUR before that could be accomplished. That means the work wasn’t going to be finished before the fire reached the two-track itself.

              It is only AFTER this exchange that Eric Marsh THEN requested the face-to-face with Frisby.

              So it would appear ( according to these SAIT notes ) that Marsh only wanted to talk face-to-face with Frisby AFTER it became obvious that the two groups were NOT going to have enough time to tie what Granite Mountain had been doing all day into the actual bulldozed main ‘two-track’.

              I think that also means that whatever Marsh felt was so important for Frisby to come all the way out to the ridge to ‘talk about and/or look at’ was some kind of ALTERNATE plan. Something OTHER than just finishing that project of tying GM’s anchor point work down into the bulldozed two-track at some point near the old-grader location.

              Then there is this from page 4 of the (redacted) Blue Ridge Unit Logs… This is definitely from BR Captain Brown’s Unit Log…
              —————————————————
              (XXXXX) speaks with (XXXX) and it is decided that (XXXXX) is going to tie in with (XXXX) in “the saddle” and he drives off.
              —————————————————

              Since this is from Captain Brown’s Unit Log and it comes at the same moment ( circa 1530 ) when Eric Marsh requested that second face-to-face meeting with Frisby… I think it’s safe to say that the UNREDACTED parts of this statement would look like this…
              —————————————————
              (Brian) speaks with (Eric) and it is decided that (Brian) is going to tie in with (Eric) in “the saddle” and he (Brian) drives off (in the UTV).
              —————————————————

              Despite what is mentioned in the SAIT notes for this ‘circa 1530’ timeframe Captain Brown’s Unit Log covering that same timeframe mentions NOTHING about the conversation with Steed where he said they were going to need another HOUR to tie into the two-track.

              So… is there anything in BR SUP Brian Frisby’s log about this?

              Turns out… there is… and it DOES pretty much match what the SAIT Investigation notes say… and in the same timeframe and ‘sequence of evernts’.

              Blue Ridge Superintendent Brian Frisby’s (redacted) Unit Log was released in a separate document from the other BR Unit Logs.

              That second document was named BlueRidgeIHC-2.pdf.

              Brian Frisby’s Unit Log remained ‘handwritten’ and was REDACTED in that original form in the BlueRidgeIHC-2.pdf document.

              On page 3 ( of 6 pages ) from Brian Frisby’s Unit Log…

              Notice in this first paragraph that US Forestry tried to HIDE
              the name of who Frisby was calling with a REDACTION,
              but then just left Frisby’s note about it being DIVA unredacted.
              That was probably a screw-up on the part of whoever was
              redacting this Unit Log.
              ————————————————————
              15:30 – (XXXX) had four of our guys bring our truck around and the rest geared up and headed to the doze line preping towards Shrine. I tryed to call (XXXX) a few times on tack 1 (DIVA) without any luck so I call (XXXXX) (XXXXXXXX) and was able to talk to (XXXXX). I told him that we were going to start prepping the dozer line to be able to burn if our hand was forced we would at least be able to protect some of the structures.

              He agreed that our time was best spent down towards the structures and that it was slow going and they would probably be another hour before they tied into the two track to the north

              (XXXXX) called me right after that to let me know he had copied direct and agreed with the plan.

              He also said he would like to meet up when I get a chance.

              I told him I would head his way with the ranger.

              (XXXXX) grabbed his gear to go and look at a rocky area to see if we could hang up fire if we had to burn.

              I headed up toward Granite Mountain.
              —————————————————————

              Since this pretty much matches what the SAIT interview
              notes say… this one is pretty easy to ‘unredact’.

              The ‘unredacted’ version most proably would look like this…

              —————————————————————
              15:30 – (Trew Brown) had four of our guys bring our truck around and the rest geared up and headed to the dozer line preping towards Shrine. I tryed to call (Eric Marsh) a few times on tack 1 (DIVA) without any luck so I call (Jesse Steed) (with Granite Mountain) and was able to talk to (Jesse). I told him that we were going to start prepping the dozer line to be able to burn if our hand was forced we would at least be able to protect some of the structures.

              He (Jesse) agreed that our time was best spent down towards the structures and that it was slow going and they would probably be another hour before they tied into the two track to the north.

              (Eric Marsh) called me right after that to let me know he had copied direct and agreed with the plan.

              He (Eric Marsh) also said he would like to meet up when I get a chance.

              I told him I would head his way with the ranger.

              (Trew Brown) grabbed his gear to go and look at a rocky area to see if we could hang up fire if we had to burn.

              I headed up toward Granite Mountain.
              —————————————————————

              So both the SAIT notes from THEIR ‘interview’ with Blue Ridge and BR SUP Brian Frisby’s own Unit Log are pretty much in agreement about the following…

              1) Circa 1530… Jesse Steed said that he and Granite Mountain would need at least another HOUR to finish what they were doing and tie into the main two-track.

              2) Only AFTER Eric Marsh says he ‘overheard’ that report does he ask Brian Frisby to come up for that second ‘face-to-face’. But ( according to Frisby ) Marsh didn’t even seem to be in any kind of hurry for that to happen. He just said “when you get a chance” to Frisby.

              3) Brown gets out of the Ranger at the west end of the Cutover Trail where he and Frisby were when this radio como took place with Steed and Marsh. Brown starts walking EAST on the Cutover Trail and Frisby takes off in the UTV Ranger out towards Marsh.

              He (Frisby) would never get there.

              This is when he comes across Brendan at the old-grader, abandons the face-to-face, and evacs Brendan back east.

              So by the time Eric requested that second face-to-face with Frisby he ( Eric ) ALREADY knew at least the following TWO things…

              1) Blue Ridge was NOT doing any ‘prep’ work on that main two-track that headed out west towards Eric’s position and was now going to be ‘prepping’ that other ‘new’ dozer push from the Sesame area over to the Shrine Youth Camp.

              2) His own GM resource was NOT going to finish the original plan of tieing into the main two-track down near the old-grader for another HOUR or so. That was an HOUR they didn’t have.

              So whatever PLAN Marsh now wanted to discuss with Frisby ‘face to-face’ would appear to have been some kind of BACKUP plan since it was now obvious they didn’t have TIME to finish the original plan.

              I think that IS what we are back to discussing at this point.

              What might that OTHER PLAN have been that Marsh seemed to need Frisby up there on the ridge to either SEE or TALK about?

              • Bob Powers says

                As simple as I Fire Fighter Can Say it——
                Your objective is to have a good tied in line what did Frizby and Marsh need to do to accomplish that.

                Then boom the Fire hits the Trigger for the Lookout and Boom the Trucks are in danger……….Boom all the line building and plan to tie in and burn out is gone.

                So what they needed to discuss as the main 2 supervisors was what it would take to finish the assignment. After the fire made its move it was to late to finish the day shift assignment.
                and all there line had been compromised.

                So I say simply they had no other plan to move and build line they were just completely in the wrong place to accomplish that. GM should have moved up the mountain in the black and
                hunkered as every one thought they were doing.

                It was already to late to get to Glen Isla and put in any line. Again I look at the Pictures taken at the rest area be for GM moved, there was no way and no time to get to Glen Isla from the Rest area the fire was going to beat them there.

                I still do not see any other plan that was not already compromised by the time BR was moving GM vehicles.
                It could have well been under consideration but was never really Formulated They ask ball to scout the possibility that meant they would not move on the plan until they had conformation it could be done.

                They would not have moved anyone until they had some conformation. We know what Ball said and that was it.

                The only statements we have from marsh and Steed .
                Were moving to our predetermined SZ.
                Nothing about reengaging.
                nothing about moving to build line north of Glen Isla.
                Nothing about tying in with a Dozer.
                That’s my take I guess I need more convincing. What I have Seen and what I have read and heard dose not take me in the new plan direction. So I am looking for more to convince me.

                • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                  Reply to Bob Powers post on
                  December 10, 2014 at 9:57 pm

                  >> Bob Powers said…
                  >>
                  >> Your objective is to have a good tied in line.

                  Exactly. At 1530 Frisby tried to raise Marsh a few times on the radio to find out if they DID have ‘good tied in line yet’ up there. He couldn’t get Marsh. So Frisby calls Steed directly. Steed says “Nope… Sorry… No tied in line yet. We need at least another HOUR”.

                  So Frisby tells Steed they won’t be working on that main ‘two-track’ dozer line at all anymore… and they are shifting their attention to the ‘Cutover Trail’ to at least try and protect some structures.

                  Steed AGREES that is what Frisby should be doing.

                  Marsh overhears ALL of this exchange between Frisby and Steed and he chimes in with his consent to ‘that new plan’.

                  So now… at this moment… Marsh already knows that ‘day project’ isn’t going to come together and YES… Frisby might as well be focusing on that ‘Cutover Trail’ instead to at least have a chance to save some structures.

                  Only THEN does Marsh ask Frisby to ‘come up’ and discuss some OTHER plan.

                  >> Bob Powers wrote…
                  >>
                  >> what did Frizby and Marsh need to do to
                  >> accomplish that.

                  That answer became clear in the radio conversation.
                  There was NOTHING they were going to be able to do.
                  Steed needed another HOUR ( which Marsh and Frisby both knew they didn’t have ) and Frisby was now off on this OTHER last-minute project Cordes gave him to improve that dozer push on the Cutover Trail instead of the main two-track.

                  Steed ‘acknowledged’ this ‘new plan’. So did Marsh.

                  Remember that long discussion we had about WHEN was the actual ‘tools up’ moment for GM?

                  I believe this was it.

                  And only THEN did Marsh still seem to want a ‘face-to-face’ with Frisby.

                  In a way… that request for that face-to-face at that point just doesn’t make any sense at all based on the evidence we DO have.

                  >> Bob Powers also wrote.
                  >>
                  >> Then boom the Fire hits the Trigger for
                  >> the Lookout and Boom the Trucks are in
                  >> danger……….Boom all the line building
                  >> and plan to tie in and burn out is gone.

                  Here is where we are differing in perspective, I think.

                  Your BOOM is the moment Frisby is already heading up to see Marsh and he comes across Brendan. You are assuming that the ‘tools up’ moment for GM on that original ‘day project’ hadn’t happened yet.

                  I think there’s a good chance the BOOM moment came BEFORE that… and this is what the documentation seems to suggest. The BOOM moment ( tools UP for GM ) was when Steed said he needed an hour to finish ‘tieing in’ on that day project and both Marsh and Frisby KNEW they didn’t have an HOUR.

                  So ‘BOOM MOMENT’ equals “TOOLS UP” on day project.

                  The only question is… WHEN did that moment really happen. That’s what we are trying to nail down.

                  >> Bob Powers also said…
                  >>
                  >> So what they needed to discuss as the main 2
                  >> supervisors was what it would take to finish the
                  >> assignment.

                  That ALREADY happened.
                  Frisby tried to call Marsh to ‘discuss what it would take to finish the assignment’. He couldn’t get him. So he called his next best bet ( Jesse Steed ) and asked him the same ‘IHC Supervisor to (acting) IHC Supervisor’ question…

                  IHC SUP Frisby: “Jesse… what’s it gonna take to finish the assignment?”

                  IHC SUP Steed: “I need at least another hour to finish tying in”.

                  BOOM. Not enough time. Not gonna happen.
                  End of assignment.

                  Steed tells Frisby he might as well forget that original assignment and go ahead with the ‘new plan’ to just focus on the Cutover Trail like Cordes told him to.

                  Marsh HEARD this entire conversation. He AGREED to
                  the ‘new plan’ for Frisby to forget about that ‘day assignment’ and just focus on the Cutover Trail.

                  So what else was there to talk about with regards to the ‘day assignment’. The BOOM moment just happened.

                  It simply wasn’t going to come together and everyone was already acknowledging that to each other over the radio.

                  Only THEN does Marsh ask for this next mysterious ‘face-to-face with Frisby… but not even in any kind of ‘quick’ timeframe. Marsh just said “When you get a chance”.

                  >> Bob Powers also said…
                  >>
                  >> After the fire made its move it was too
                  >> late to finish the day shift assignment.

                  It was already ‘too late’ when Steed told Frisby he needed at least another HOUR. No chance. Everyone knew there was no way they had THAT much time…
                  not at 1530. The ‘day shift assignment’ was BLOWN even before Frisby was asked by Marsh to travel up there.

                  >> Bob Powers also said…
                  >>
                  >> So I say simply they had no other plan
                  >> to move and build line they were just
                  >> completely in the wrong place to
                  >> accomplish that. GM should have moved
                  >> up the mountain in the black

                  They actually DID. That is exactly what MacKenzie’s 1550 photos show. It was TOOLS UP for the men that were down the slope and we see them ‘moving up the mountain into the black’ where the others were… then we see them ALL just doing ‘smoke ’em if ya got ’em’ and resting and taking photos. They were DONE ( as far as they knew ) and they WERE already ‘up the mountain’ and ‘in the black’.

                  >> Bob Powers also said…
                  >>
                  >> It was already to late to get to Glen Isla and put in
                  >> any line.

                  The ‘put in any line’ part is what we are now wondering here… but there is no question that SOMEONE ( Marsh? ) certainly thought they had ‘plenty of time’ to get to Glen Ilah ( for whatever reason ).

                  Gary Cordes himself has also testified he thought they had ‘plenty of time to get there’ even following the ‘TOOLS UP’ moment.

                  >> Bob Powers also wrote…
                  >>
                  >> Again I look at the Pictures taken at the rest
                  >> area before GM moved, there was no way
                  >> and no time to get to Glen Isla from the
                  >> Rest area the fire was going to beat
                  >> them there.

                  I wish you ( or anyone with the sense God gave a Goose ) had been there to TELL them that.

                  I truly do.

                  They (obviously) thought otherwise.

                  >> Bob Powers also said…
                  >>
                  >> I still do not see any other plan that was
                  >> not already compromised by the time
                  >> BR was moving GM vehicles.
                  >> It could have well been under consideration
                  >> but was never really Formulated They ask
                  >> Ball to scout the possibility that meant they
                  >> would not move on the plan until they had
                  >> conformation it could be done.
                  >>
                  >> They would not have moved anyone until
                  >> they had some conformation.

                  Mr. Powers… you always speak ‘to the point’ and in a frame of reference of how things OUGHT to be… and you KNOW all of us here appreciate that…

                  …but I wish I could share your confidence that everything that was going down that day was ‘by the book’ and according to the ‘way things ought to be’.

                  >> Bob Powers also said…
                  >>
                  >> We know what Ball said and that was it.
                  >>
                  >> The only statements we have from Marsh
                  >> and Steed…
                  >>
                  >> Were moving to our predetermined SZ.
                  >> Nothing about reengaging.
                  >> Nothing about moving to build line north of Glen Isla.
                  >> Nothing about tying in with a Dozer.

                  You missed one.

                  Eric Marsh at 1637.

                  “That’s it. That’s where WE want the retardant”.

                  I know we have our doubts about that statement itself and whether Burfiend could have been really sure it actually came from Eric Marsh ( and not just someone commenting on the 1633 SEAT drop )…

                  …but humor me for a moment.

                  What if Marsh really did say that… at 1637?

                  What would that retardant drop have been FOR other than to probably support a dozer line that Marsh might have thought was supposed to being actively ‘pushed’ there near Glen Ilah?

                  >> Bob Powers also said…
                  >>
                  >> That’s my take I guess I need more convincing.
                  >> What I have Seen and what I have read and
                  >> heard dose not take me in the new plan direction.
                  >> So I am looking for more to convince me.

                  Fair enough.

                  Personally.. I AGREE with you… but I still think this whole possibility of another ‘plan’ being in place which *may* have contributed to their decision to move is worth this ‘revisit’ of the evidence.

                  It’s might be a ‘rabbit hole’… but there really might be a fuzzy creature lurking at the bottom of it.

                  • Bob Powers says

                    For Now lets not say things were by the Book as They were not that simple.
                    I am saying years of experience doing fire suppression yields some basic thinking. Some basic things that happen with out the book. Like scout a plan before you implement it. Have a plan before you move resources. Make an attempt to tie in your line to the next division. Don’t let the fire dictate you plan.

                    Hail Mary’s do not work as last minute plans.
                    I think many of the crews on the fire were already discouraged with the leadership including GM.

                    The only real goal we can say right or wrong was their very distinct move to their predetermined SZ
                    We also know they moved without a safety plan.
                    one thought they move towards a location that would allow them to be picked up buy their busses, and off the mountain where they would be stranded for some time. At this point many factors interred their thinking process or lack there of (Human Factors) that over looked the bad things that were happening. Still my take.

                    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                      I think the bottom line at this point is…

                      We continue to accumulate DIRECT evidence that SPGS1 Gary Cordes WAS at least trying to put a plan into motion ‘down there’ to do an emergency dozer-push to the ‘southwest’ and out there near the bottom of the Sesame area and on over ( as far as possible ) to the rock outcrops of the Boulder Springs Ranch itself.

                      There is INDIRECT evidence that DIVSA Eric Marsh became AWARE of this plan… even though it was in its initial stages. Whatever TAC channel Cordes used to instruct HEQB Cory Ball to begin the ‘scouting’ for that operation would have been a channel that DIVSA Eric Marsh could hear as well.

                      We have no DIRECT evidence that ties this ‘plan’ to Granite Mountain’s mysterious move out of the black

                      The closest we get is…

                      1555 – GM is ‘idle’ in rest spot taking pictures

                      1600 – Cordes tells HEQB Cory Ball to start scouting a ‘dozer line’ that would try to connect up with the Boulder Springs Ranch in a last-ditch effort to keep fire out of Glen Ilah.

                      1604 – GM has suddenly ‘gaggled up’ and is headed for the Boulder Springs Ranch.

                      1627 – Someone is asking Eric Marsh where Granite Mountain is and WHY it is taking them so long to get to where someone expected them to be already.

                      1635 – Gary Cordes absolutely KNEW that Granite Mountain was either supposed to already be at the Boulder Springs Ranch or was just about to arrive there… and he tells Tyson Esquibel to send an engine to the BSR and to make sure they (all) ‘get out safely’.

                      What we do NOT have is any testimony or other evidence that ties all this together into it being a REASON why Granite Mountain left the safe black ( suddenly ) and was headed for the Boulder Springs Ranch.

                      One more piece of evidence from somewhere… and all this just might make sense.

                • The Truth Will Always Remain Elusive says

                  It certainly makes sense to not move any resources during the evaluation of a plan’s ability to be implemented.

                  It would also be within reason (and I’m NOT dismissing here, the 10 & 18 and LCES issues we have discussed over and over), to pre-position a resource that has lost all usefulness at it current location, to a (SAFE) place (in a SAFE manner) where they could re-engage easily and effectively, should the plan under consideration be implemented.

                  • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                    Exactly. I guess that’s all I ( me, personally ) have been trying to establish in the exchange above.

                    The simple possibility that there could have been AWARENESS on the part of DIVS Eric Marsh of this ‘proposed’ PLAN that *might* be coming together down there involving a dozer push to protect Glen Ilah.

                    If there WAS awareness on DIVSA’s part that Cordes had started to put the plan into motion down there ( scouting had started, dozer was in place ready to start upon command, etc. )… and DIVSA thought they *might* be needed to help improve that dozer line down there ( if it came together )…

                    …then give how FAR AWAY they were even while this ‘plan’ was just forming… it would have been ( in Marsh’s mind ) stupid to wait for some radio como about ‘the dozer line is ready now… you can come down’.

                    No. There would have been OVERLAP in both the timing and the thinking.

                    This is all IAOI ( If And Only If ) DIVSA Marsh became aware of this ‘plan’ that Cordes had and that he had already told HEQB Cory Ball to begin to implement.

                    If Marsh really thought that ‘plan’ was even GOING to ‘come together’ down there… he would have been thnking “time is a wastin'” and wold have been urging Steed to start moving right away… so they would already BE in a position to help once there really was a dozer line happening down there.

                    • Bob Powers says

                      I think this is one of those points we will have to agree to disagree until there is further evidence
                      to make this clearer. I can not make the final step and that’s where I am for now.

                      The other problem is pushing Dozer line across State , Private and BLM land also takes approval and cooperation. Believe it or not EPA, Antiquities Act and permission to cross private property require approval. BLM and Private would have a say in what cat lines were put in just hoops to jump thru.

                      The Antiquities act has stopped a lot of Dozer line in recent years. Archeologists now make decisions on where and if Dozer lines are put in. You just don’t start putting Dozer line any place you want with out clearance and especially on private land.

                      Archeologists are on all FS and BLM fires now
                      If you were unaware of that. I think the State is under the same requirements.

                    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                      General note: See posts above and see Arizona LAW about what AZ Forestry can/cannot do…

                      http://www.azleg.gov/FormatDocument.asp?inDoc=/ars/37/00623.htm&Title=37&DocType=ARS

                      Basically… Arizona Forestry does NOT have to ask anyone for any permission to do just about anything they want in the exercise of their ‘authority’ and ‘responsibility’ to suppress wildfire in Arizona.

                      Anyone who wanted to push dozer line somewhere can just point at the ground and tell the dozer to GO.

        • calvin says

          Wtk. At what point do you think Frisby heard marsh reference taking the trail, along the ridge, through the green. As he states in the m2u00271 video. Before heading up to have the face to face with marsh? During his trip, before picking up McDonough, or after picking up McDonough?

          • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

            Reply to calvin post on December 11, 2014 at 4:48 am

            >> calvin said…
            >>
            >> At what point do you think Frisby heard marsh reference
            >> taking the trail, along the ridge, through the green. As he
            >> states in the m2u00271 video.

            Well… first off… I think you have to take Frisby’s statement in context.

            He was explaining what he knew to Hulburd, Yowell and Clawson… and that one statement was a ‘continuation’ of his explanation that he started with “They were in the black…”

            But then Frisby’s ‘thought’ got ‘interrupted’ by both Hulburd and Yowell.

            Yowell thought he meant ‘the lookout’ was the one in the black, and Frisby specifically corrects him. THEN he makes that statement about Eric ‘deciding’ that the trail ‘goes around’.

            For the sake of completeness… here is that FULL exchange from M2U00271…

            —————————————————–
            +0:21
            (Brian Frisby): They were sittin’ in cold black.

            +0:23
            (Trueheart Brown): They were in black.

            +0:25
            (Uknown – Aaron Hulburd?): (So) THAT’S what they were talking about? (The) Lookout?

            +0:28
            (Brian Frisby): No. No. (He’s) in black…

            +0:30
            (Unknown – KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell): ( Overlapping with Frisby ) I heard that (one).

            +0:31
            (Brian Frisby): …and Eric decided that the trail that kinda follows that ridge..green… goes around. That lookout was down below. I went in to go tie in with Eric… and that’s when it picked up. I just happened to stumble upon the lookout… without the… uh… I grabbed him. ( He’s out ).
            ——————————————————-

            So if you actually take out the ‘interruptions’ from Hulburd and Yowell and the moment where Frisby has to stop and correct Yowell… and you also take out that ‘green’ reference… I believe this is closer to the ‘complete thought’ that Frisby was trying to express at that moment…

            (Brian Frisby): They were sittin’ in cold black.and Eric decided that the trail that kinda follows that ridge goes around.

            Okay… all that being said… I still think it’s very hard to say what TIMEFRAME Frisby is referring to here about WHEN Eric Marsh ‘decided’ that the trail ‘follows that ridge around’.

            I still think Frisby could have been just referencing something Marsh pointed out during their face-to-face back around NOON.

            They were standing up there for a full 30 minutes.

            At some point Frisby himself could have noticed that two-track heading south and even just pointed at it and asked Marsh… “Where does THAT go?” Marsh had seen that trail on the iPad that morning as Cordes was showing him where the ‘Boulder Springs Ranch’ was. Marsh could have just replied to Frisby… “Oh… that trail… it just sorta goes around down there back towards town” or something like that.

            This statement from Frisby, at the time he made it, really is kind of curious. It would SEEM to indicate that Frisby KNEW Marsh had headed ‘south’ on that trail… but that doesn’t match anything Frisby said in his SAIT interview notes… nor does it match what they were just about to DO and WHERE they were about to go look for them ( back up at the anchor point ).

            SIDENOTE: A redacted copy of Frisby’s own Unit Log notes WAS released along with the other redacted BR Unit Logs… but the pages from Frisby’s log that cover the deployment timeframe and everything he did ( or thought ) after that have always been MISSING. Those pages were NOT ( and still have NOT been ) released. Frisby’s Unit Log ends with him just describing how he was pushing everyone out of the Shrine area circa 4:30 PM.

            However…

            There IS the following from BR Captain Trueheart Brown’s Unit Log.

            He actually describes pretty specifically where ‘they’ ( he and Frisby ) actually thought the ‘deployment site’ as they broke through in the Shrine area and were rushing ‘out there’.

            SIDENOTE: I think you were wondering down below about Oxygen bottles. Here is where Trew Brown says that had a ‘few’ of them with them… and not just ONE.

            ———————————————–
            1725 – We then try to access again via shrine and tie in with ( Redacted, but has to be Clawson, Hulburd and Yowell ) and they have a Polaris razor and a ATV. We only have a few bottle O2, one med bag and a backboard. We tell them about access and where we think the site may be. We drive up as far as we can on shrine and then sit there for a few minutes contemplating the situation. We all know that it is cold black beyond the first wall of heat and the propane tanks that are venting. I remember saying “Fuck it. Let’s go for it” and then we all just go for it. There are multiple trees across the road and power lines are hanging very low too. We punch it and make it through. We head up the Dozer line and the tie into the 2 track and take that until we make the left hand turn up the 2 track to where we think they might be.
            ———————————————–

            So Trew Brown mentions TWICE in this one paragraph ( that actually covers the M2U00271 video timeframe itself ) that he and Frisby had a good idea where the ‘deployment site’ might be….

            1) We tell them about access and where we think the site may be.

            2) We head up the Dozer line and the tie into the 2 track and take that until we make the left hand turn up the 2 track to where we think they might be.

            The ‘left hand turn’ Brown is referring to would be that point at the old-grader where ( when heading west ) you can either take a RIGHT and head up that ‘dead-end’ two-track to the NORTH… or you can take a LEFT and head up that other two-track that now heads southwest but does take you up to the ‘anchor point’.

            This is the ‘left-turn’ and the ‘two-track’ that both Frisby and Brown took for the NOON face-to-face and it is the same two-track they both thought GM was ‘coming down’. later that day… and it is NOW the place where they think they got ‘caught’ and where the deployment site might be.

            So I’m not even seeing a match there between what Frisby is SAYING to Hulburd, Clawson and Yowell in the M2U00271 video and then what Brown says later in his Unit Log about where they thought the deployment site might be as they were breaking through.

            We still do NOT have Frisby’s Unit Log notes that cover this ‘ground mission’ ( and M2U00271 ) timeframe. Those ‘pages’ from Frisby’s Unit Log have NEVER been released by US Forestry… even in a ‘redacted’ form.

            Just one more thing ( out of who knows HOW much ) that we KNOW the US Forestry Service still HAS but refuses to release even in response to valid FOIA requests.

  23. Marti Reed says

    So.

    After sitting here, reading what I’ve missed, re-reading what I haven’t missed, re-reading what I’ve written. I have another one of my “in reality” questions.

    Being an arm-chair quarterback and all.

    The discussion about whether “The Cordes Plan” was actually a Plan or a kinda sorta plan or more of just a pipe-dream. In the context of whether the entire day even had a Plan or a kinda sorta plan or more of just a pipe-dream, itself.

    I still have “Slow Down, Skippy!!” echoing through my mind. (I think this fire ought to be re-named the “Slow Down, Skippy!” Fire”).

    I find it echoing in some of my own “in real life’ situations. It happens when I’m “racing” to get something done, and I’m on some kind of edge, and my mind now, thanks to one of the Three Prescotteers, says “Slow Down, Skippy!!”

    And then I realize I need to slow down or I’m possibly going to do something that may cost me more time/grief/money/whatever in the long run than if I slow down and really think about what’s happening.

    Seems to me there’s kind of a paradox here. Especially as it relates to this fire. Especially after the fire escaped Initial Attack, but maybe even before that.

    Including how they had a PAID-FOR helitack chopper and its PAID-FOR crew mostly sitting there all day Saturday and Sunday, but were TOO BUSY to stop and think about out how to really use it. Especially given that. on Saturday, that helicopter could have been WAY more helpful with that Initial Attack than the SEATs and Tankers they seem to have been agonizing about not being able to hold onto.

    Even after the fire escaped, they didn’t bother to use it. There was plenty of light to do it, there were available dipsites, but, seemingly, nobody ever STOPPED to think about how to use it. They were SO BUSY they just let the fire go. And I’m not convinced it wasn’t possible for them to have corralled that fire after it escaped by just getting that helicopter engaged.

    And the ordering of the Type 2 Short Crew. They were TOO BUSY “doing stuff” to STOP and actually analyze/document what the fire was doing, what it might do. what might really be needed (given the fuel loads, the communities at risk, what the fire was actually doing, what the weather could do, etc..) And so Phoenix (who wasn’t even there) decided to order a Short Team, and Musser etc (there was a BLM Type 3 Incident Commander right by his SIDE as this was happening) apparently was TOO BUSY doing “other stuff” to STOP and think about whether that team would be adequate because they hadn’t bothered to STOP and do the Required Standard Operating Procedure of filling out an Escaped Fire Report.

    And then the dumping of retardant on Granite Mountain’s test fire. WTF??? Because Rory Collins was, seemingly, TOO BUSY doing whatever he thought he was doing to STOP and have a conversation with Eric/Granite Mountain about what Strategy/Tactics they were using and WHY (since it was, apparently, “different” from how they fight fires in the Northwest–a totally different ecosystem/fire system than the one he was actually flying over as Air Attack).

    Personally, I could go ON AND ON about this stuff.

    And so now we have this Plan/kinda-sorta-plan/possible pipe-dream. Which may (or may not) have been, relatively speaking, scratched out on a napkin between Gary Cordes and Paul Musser (I’ve done that sort of planning in my life–but with WAY fewer lives at risk).

    So Gary Cordes started “throwing resources” into his “Plan.” Including, at least, a dozer, a dozer operator, a Blue Ridge IHC HEQB, and, “hopefully,” an engine or two. And, maybe even Granite Mountain IHC.

    Because OMG the fire is heading towards Yarnell/Glen Ilah, and jumping “trigger points” and “outperforming our expectations”!!!

    That’s where the paradox comes in.

    I’m really curious. Several of you, my compadres around this fire circle, have conversed about how things are “supposed” to be done. What’s “supposed” to be done comes across to me as being deliberate, relatively analytical, looking realistically into the future (including possible worst case scenarios), communicative, and concerned, above all, about fire-fighter and civilian SAFETY (at least in theory).

    That stuff takes TIME. It seems to me it takes STOPPING being TOO BUSY (at least it does FOR ME).

    On real fires, does this actually happen?

    Do over-stressed decision-makers (when things are speeding up and “outperforming expectations”) actually consciously realize/decide to STOP BEING TOO BUSY, while things are racing all around them, for AS LONG AS IT TAKES (in spite of the time-pressure) to really consider all this stuff that is happening around them, all the people who are involved, the MOST LIKELY things that COULD happen, the worst possible scenarios, the various resources they have “in their various pockets,” and THUS, what they need to decide they need to do?

    Does training for these kinds of positions include how to do that? Does it include how to recognize when it’s time to “Slow Down, Skippy!!!”???

    Thanks, to all my compadres around this fire circle, in advance.

    • Retired with 38 says

      Yes that does happen. I have been on numerous expanding incidents that teams have arrived on and won’t take the incident until they have full awareness of the situation, resources on scene, potential, the priorities of the host agency, cost estimate( amount the host would like to keep it under). This is all discussed and accepted during a transition and “delagation of authority” meeting.

      Extremely difficult to do during a rapidly expanding event, but for obvious reasons, organization, safety, command and control, a step that is extremely important.

      • Bob Powers says

        As Retired 38— says correct and I have seen portions of Fires or the whole Fire be pulled back from all work to safe areas until an evaluation of a new plan can be formulated. When the fire is kicking your butt as Marti says the Command people
        need to say who slow down Skippy lets not put people in danger until we have a plan in place Command type teams are thought that in training for Type 2 and 1 teams.

        When you start developing a plan you don’t start moving resources until all of the plan has been put together and acceptable to The IC.
        For example Ball went to scout the idea of a Dozer line He did not take the Dozer with him. It was a Idea not a plan or a directed start building line.
        Moving an entire Hand crew off a Division with out a Plan in place or where to start
        Just dose not happen. And we have no talk of such a plan. So maybe an Idea that was being discussed until OPS found out the Fire was out running his possible plan
        You are making a huge jump from a Tractor Boss Scouting a possible New Line to it being a feasible Plan. Again to those of you who have never Fought Fire.
        You just do not make Frontal attacks on fires With those burning conditions and Wind. It is to late to Fire out Roads do to erratic Winds or Dozer lines the only choices you have are pulling back and protecting structures where you can with out putting you Fire Fighters at risk. Starting new line to flank the Fire.
        I do not believe a plan was ever really initiated but only discussed.

    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

      All good questions ( as usual ) Marti.

      The academic side of me just wants to post that link that RTS found again to those great documents about ‘Decision Making’… but then I say ‘Slow Down Skippy’ and realize those documents ( while perfectly relevant ) do NOT answer the REAL questions you are asking.

      You are not asking… how is it SUPPOSED to be.

      You are asking people with current/past WFF experience to say whether the ‘chaos’, the disorganization, the myopia, the poor decision making and the general “who is really running this thing?” feeling at the Yarnell Hill fire was NORMAL… or not… and whether this kind of rolling fuster clucking is REALLY just kinda ‘the way it is’ during a transition from an IA to an up-level incident ( even if the up-level people arriving turn right around and just treat it as still an IA situation ).

      Something tells me the HONEST answers would be “more often than you would think”.

      In all truth… regardless of whether some of the ‘ultimate’ answers are ever found as to why 19 people who were supposed to be highly trained ‘fire experts’ and the ‘best of the best’ ended up burned to death in a box canyon… this Yarnell Hill Fire has to now be one of the best photo/video + testimony + Unit Logs documented fires EVER.

      Speaking of ‘Slow Down Skippy’… have you had moments where I have had while sifting through ALL of this material and the massive amounts of photos and videos where you go… “Wow… I can’t believe how MUCH there really is here?”

      It’s really quite amazing how MANY photos and videos there are of this damn fire.

      I think that is a GOOD thing.

      The Yarnell Hill Fire really does ‘belong to the ages’ now already… and I hate to inform everyone who wants it to just ‘go away’ but I have a ‘news flash’ for them. It is NEVER going to ‘go away’. Not only is it officially the ‘greatest blunder in the history of Wildland Firefighting’… it is also the FIRST major WFF disaster of the FULL-RPM Internet/Social Media age. Not only WILL it be ‘studied’ for years to come… it will also now be EASY to do so.

      And I can also assure you…As much ‘evidence’ as there is right now… there is no doubt MORE to come. Whatever is NOT known now… WILL (eventually) be known. It is as inevitable as it can be. History doesn’t like these kinds of ‘mysteries’ and they get SOLVED, sooner or later.

      I agree with you that KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell’s admonishment to that Peeples Valley Water Tender driver to ‘Slow down Skippy’ could easily be one of the most important “Lessons Learned” itself for this tragedy…

      …but for the time being… and as we continue to look at this thing… my ACTUAL favorite ‘radio quote’ so far ALSO comes from Mr. KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell.

      It’s from that moment when he and Hulburd are standing there looking down the Shrine Road and Yowell is actually convinced that Granite Mountain has deployed somewhere right there beyond the end of Shrine Road.

      Yowell says “They’re RIGHT BACK THERE somewhere”.

      Hulburd says… “But they moved OUT of the BLACK’.

      ( Here comes MY favorite quote ).

      KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell turns to Hulburd and says ( with unbelief in his voice )…

      “Yea… I know. WHY?”

      • Retired with 38 says

        Yes the chaos is there, and yes it is normally a “fluster cluck”. But, with quality information on the situation provided by the host agency it gives the incoming team something to work with. We have often transitioned on the run and have at a minimum come up with maps, tactics and strategy-at time the “plan for that first operational period was handwritten, but it was a plan that was distributed to all resources.

        • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

          Thank you. However… have you ever seen ( or heard of ) a situation quite like Yarnell where even a lot of the members of the SHORT team that was supposed to ‘pick it up’ in the morning didn’t even show up?

          Bad enough it was a ‘SHORT team’ decision the night before… MANY of the people ordered up the night before never even showed up in the morning.

          So it was actually a SHORT-SHORT team on Sunday morning trying to take over that fire.

            • Bob Powers says

              And that is when the Team needs to step back scout the Fire and determine the best attack with there resources.

              This partial team seemed to have a shot gun approach with out any Idea what they could accomplish.

              But they did establish a chain of Command with what they had.
              IC,OPS LINE, OPS PLANNING, DIVISONS and STRICK TEAMS..
              So we need to first determine was there a complete brake down in Command. Were People doing there own thing and there was no Control central making decisions?
              If this is what was happening which seems to be the case.
              Then GM and others were making there own plans and who knows what they were or if there were any at 1600 on.

          • Retired with 38 says

            On occasion we have. Had team members arrive late and you make due without . In my opinion this organizational failure was not due to lack of overhead-it was due to not gathering enough intel on the situation, transitioning “on the fly”(if there even was a formal transition) and not recognizing the potential for the fire to run to structures early enough to take aggressive action on a indirect ( not frontal if done early enough ) attack. Aircraft predicted the fire front moving into structures early that day, did Ops not get that message?

            • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

              Air Attack ‘Bravo 3’ ( Rusty Warbis and Paul Lenmark ) arrived over the fire about NOON to replace Rory Collins who had already left the area to refuel.

              Bravo 3 first interacted with Darrell Willis and did some VLAT drops for him around the Double Bar A Ranch.

              By 12:30 PM, Warbis and Lenmark had taken a full turn around the fire and it was already perfectly obvious to THEM ( as early as 12:30 PM ) that the fire was GOING to be going into Yarnell itself THAT day… during THAT burn cycle.

              That’s when they decided ( apparently all on their own ) to start laying that desperate west-to-east retardant line out in the middle bowl. They said it was obvious GM Hotshots were already ‘out of the game’ and the other BR Hotshot crew was just hanging around their buggies doing nothing at all.

              Problem is that ( also apparently ) all this critical Intel from Bravo 3time was only being shared with DIVSZ Dance Marquez. He would then basically disappear even from that critical southeast area of the fire that he was supposed to be DIVS of… and many others would then testify they had no idea where he was pretty much the rest of the day.

              I think Warbis and Lenmark believed that the Intel they shared with this DIVZ would automatically get ‘shared up’ to the OPS / IC level, or something.

              It never happened.

              • Retired with 38 says

                That information from Bravo 3 is a problem. An event with that significance needs to be communicated to Ops and the IC so they can adjust according. Surprising to me that Bravo 3 would not recognize the need to communicate this event to more than just the Division.

                Question for you WTKTT, I believe that Structure group 1 & 2 arrived on Saturday night, did they order/request resources for the operational period on Sunday? Sorry I am solely on my phone so I can’t get to other info.

                • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                  Yes. I’m also on a smartphone at the moment and away from docs but there really is no doubt that the from-site resource ordering Saturday night and early AM Sunday was coming completely from just 3 people. ICT4 Russ Shumate, SPGS1 Gary Forces and SPGS2 Darrell Willis. Willis was the primary and the one making MOST of the recommendations to Shumate about what to order. These 3 men all say in their logs they got together at both 1:30 AM and then again at 3:30 AM to have these ‘resource ordering’ sessions.

                  • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                    Darn smartphone spell checker/transformer struck again. It continually wants to change ‘Cordes’ into the word ‘Forces’ as it did again on last post.

                    It’s ‘Gary Cordes’… not ‘Gary Forces’.

                • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                  Reply to ‘Retired with 38’ post on
                  December 10, 2014 at 11:56 am

                  >> Retired with 38 said…
                  >>
                  >> That information from Bravo 3 is a problem.
                  >> An event with that significance needs to
                  >> be communicated to Ops and the IC so
                  >> they can adjust according. Surprising to
                  >> me that Bravo 3 would not recognize the
                  >> need to communicate this event to more
                  >> than just the Division.

                  Well… as unbelievable as some say it to be… not only did Air Attack ‘Bravo 3’ (apparently) not feel the need to communicate their full ‘evaluation of expected fire behavior’ directly to any OPS or the IC ( and left the information with DIVSZ for him to do whatever )…

                  …they also (apparently) did NOT feel the need to consult with ANYONE on the ground about the massive retardant line project they were now going to embark on across that entire ‘middle bowl’ from the western ridge all the way across to the north end of Harper Canyon.

                  They just went ahead and started using the DC10 VLAT that was ‘on scene’ to do that.

                  There was a point where I, myself, was trying to make an argument that perhaps DIVSA Eric Marsh had either ‘requested’ or was personally ‘directing’ this west-to-east desperation retardant line just laying there in the middle of the fuel. ( NOTE: Even Warbis and Lenmark testified they knew that wasn’t ‘normal’ or even going to be all that effective… but such was their feeling that SOMEONE needed to be doing SOMETHING to try and protect Yarnell that day. It was the best that THEY could come up with… on their own ).

                  Back in Chapter 9 of this ongoing discussion… I finished my OWN research into that and concluded there is absolutely NO real evidence that ‘Bravo 3’ had ever been communicating at all with DIVSA Eric Marsh… or that ‘Bravo 3’ had ever actually communicated with ANYONE on the ground before THEY simply decided this retardant line was needed and that’s what they were going to start doing.

                  The very first DROP at the western end of this retardant line is when the DC10 VLAT had that scary near-collision with the Skycrane Helicopter. Everyone saw that… and some even filmed it… and STILL there was no attempt from any fire command person on the ground to improve communications with ‘Air Attack’. Everybody ( Bravo 3, the VLAT and the Skycrane chopper ) just went about their business ‘doing their own thing’ that day.

                  Again… I ask you… based on YOUR experience… does this sound even remotely NORMAL for Air-To-Air operations over a fire?

                  Is it NORMAL for them to just be up there doing (apprently) whatever the hell they THINK needs to be done without fully checking or coordinating their ‘choices’ with the people on the ground.

                  Please say NO ( That it isn’t normal at all ).

                  I would hate to think that this MASSIVE DISCONNECT between the Air and Ground forces being demonstrated pretty much ALL DAY on Sunday, June 30, 2013 was in any way ‘normal’.

                  If it is… then it’s a wonder there aren’t being bodies carted off the field all season long in any given year.

                  • Retired with 38 says

                    based on my experience not normal. The air effort needs to be coordinated with the ground effort through either communication with ops or directly with a div. i have seen AA given the latitude of picking “targets of opportuniy” but stiil working dirctly with ops/div. the communication from that aircraft to Ops on changing fire conditions / threat is paramount – after all they usually have the view in the event.

                    That being said, i have never seem AA dictating tactics to ground resources either until now.

                    Usually AA will make recommendation to Ops in regard to tactics and strategies- and oh, normally by day three AA would have a hard copy of the incident action plan.

                    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                      Thank you.

                      Everyone seemed to be in their ‘own little world’ that day…. just ‘doing their own thing’.

                      It’s a wonder even MORE people didn’t die that day.

                • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                  Followup to above…

                  It should be noted that the ‘conversation’ I am talking about where Air Attack ‘Bravo 3’ ( Rusty Warbis and Paul Lenmark ) were relayinig THEIR plan to start building this ‘deperation retardant line’ to DIVSZ Rance Marquez is the SAME conversation that ( according to Marquez himself ) was then ‘overheard’ my DIVSA Eric Marsh… and that is when Marsh got all pissed off and proceeded to have that ‘argument’ with Marquez.

                  Marquez had arrived in the Sesame Area ( around 12:15 PM ) where the Blue Ridge Hotshots were all just sitting around by their Carriers and doing NOTHING… and that is when he tried to contact DIVSA Marsh up on the ridge.

                  Marquez said he had no luck doing that ( some wrong tones on his radio, or something )… and the only person he could really establish contact with down there on the south end of the fire was ‘Air Attack’ itself.

                  So Marquez says that is when he ‘hit them up’ for an ‘overview’ of what the fire was doing… and that’s when Warbis and Lenmark relayed their observations and plans to Marquez’.

                  Somewhere in that conversation were some queries from ‘Bravo 3’ itself back to Marquez about where the ‘Division Boundaries’ really were there on the ground.

                  DIVSZ Marquez didn’t really KNOW. That is why he had been trying to call Marsh and that is what he was sent down there to DO… establish firm DIVSA and DIVSZ boundaries.

                  Marsh definitely overheard THAT part of Marquez’s conversation with ‘Bravo 3’… and moments later when Marquez WAS able to contact Marsh on a TAC channel… Marsh was all pre-pissed off about what he had heard and he accused Marquez of trying to ‘take away his real-estate’.

                  Marquez assured him that wasn’t the case… and that he was just ‘chatting’ with ‘Air Attack’ to try and get a general picture of the situation. They apparently ‘decided’ that the north/south boundary between Division A and Division Z would be the ‘old-grader’ location itself… but the point I am making is that there IS this body of evidence that whatever ‘intel’ Bravo 3 was passing on to DIVSZ Rance Marquez over the Air-To-Ground channel circa 12:15 PM… Eric Marsh was ‘listening’ to that and heard the same ‘report’.

                  So if we are talking about DIVS level people not relaying a crucial situational report from an Air Attack up to OPS or IC level… then ( theoretically ) DIVSA Eric Marsh lifted no more fingers to do that than DIVSZ Rance Marquez did.

                  The only thing DIVSA Marsh seemed concerned about from that conversation with ‘Bravo 3’ is that DIVSZ Marquez might have been trying to ‘take real-estate away from him’ without checking with HIM first.

                  • The Truth Will Always Remain Elusive says

                    As far as any ‘obligation’ to pass information up the chain, I would think that would fall on the actual ‘participant’ of the conversation (Marquez), as opposed to Marsh, who was just overhearing it and not a participant.

                    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                      There is also the fact that this critical “expected fire behavior” report from Air Attack at 12:30 PM was over the “Air-To-Ground” channel.

                      You would THINK that at least ONE of the OPS people ( OPS1 Todd Abel or OPS2 Paul Musser ) would have ALSO ‘overheard it’ ( just like DIVSA Marsh did ) and would have realized how it should be significantly changing their ‘plans’.

                      But there is NO evidence any OPS level person was ever aware of this critical “What is GOING to happen later TODAY” coming from Air Attack as early as 12:30 PM that day.

                      As for IC Roy Hall.

                      fugeeeet about it.

                      IC Roy Hall has already testified that he didn’t even feel the need to be carrying a radio that day. That wasn’t his ‘command style’.

                      He was just on the phone all day in the principal’s office at the Model Creek School ICP trying to get TOMORROW figured out.

                    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                      From Roy Hall’s testimony to the SAIT…

                      ———————————–
                      “As IC; I empower my people and don’t listen to the radio. I wasn’t listening to the radio.”
                      ———————————–

                      Also.. I was informed I have a bad typo above.
                      Proper written version of phrase used is…

                      Fuh-get about it.

                  • Retired with 38 says

                    An additional comment – i have been around a few IC’s ( type 1&2″s), most if not all trusted and empowered their team members, but all of them carried a radio and kept one ear on the incident, knowing that if something went to shit they are ultimately responsible (for the big picture).

  24. WantsToKnowTheTruth says

    *
    * WHO IS THE ‘ONE OTHER’?

    Glad to see the discission about the possible ‘plan’ continuing. It really could be the thing that Arizona Forestry has always been trying to HIDE.

    The bottom line is we CANNOT make the following official Unit Log entry from Blue Ridge Hotshot ( and acting HEQB for the dozer ) Cory Ball just ‘go away’…

    ————————————————
    Structure group one assigns me and ONE OTHER to
    locate possibility of DOZER LINE to southwest of Yarnell.
    —————————————–

    So who the heck is this ONE OTHER that BR Hotshot Cory Ball has always been referring to and who (apparently) received the same instuctions he did from Cordes circa 1600.

    Could it have been DIVSA Eric Marsh himself?

    • calvin says

      Just throwing this out . If marsh made it the bottom, and followed the rock outcropping that made up the north side of the deployment bowl. Could he have called in a GPS coordinate for that location, being the end location for the dozer line, and thus it would have been helpful to have someone at the beginning (ball) and at the end (marsh) of the proposed dozer line. Right?

      • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

        Since it would behoove us to approach this with a completely ‘open’ mind again… I am going to say YES… that is a possibility.

        In other words… it might even be possible that the ‘area’ there between the rock outcroppings at the east end of the north ridge of the box canyon ( which never actually ‘burned over’ on the top and where some of the unburned trees could still be seen following the tragedy ) was actually the ‘work destination’.

        It’s possible that Marsh even misunderstood was was really ‘already’ happening and might have thought there was *supposed* to be plenty of new ‘dozer line’ in that area ready to be ‘prepped’ by Hotshots before they even got there.

        Maybe Cordes didn’t realize that Cory Ball decided he was going to deliver that Blue Ridge Chase truck ( with UTV trailer ) back to the Ranch House Restaurant BEFORE even starting that ‘mission’ he’d been given by Cordes… and that just threw the timing all to hell… and prevented Ball from even returning to Justin and the dozer.

        ( I am obviously just thinking out loud here ).

        If Marsh was AWARE ( in any way ) that Cordes was looking to do whatever it took to try and get that fire to ‘skirt around’ the western edge of Glen Ilah and not enter the subdivision… and Marsh was anywhere near that mouth of the box canyon from 1630 to 1637… then that would certainly be yet another possible explanation for his (supposed) unsolicited transmit to Bravo 3 ( at 1637 ) saying “That’s it… that’s where we want the retardant” even when Bravo 3 was just ‘circling around’ and happened to be seen on a ‘west to east’ vector at that time.

        In thinking about the possibilities here… we should remember that we have already seen any number of times on this fire when it wasn’t even so much what the ACTUAL plan was… or what was ACTUALLY happening somewhere… people’s behavior was being influenced by bad communications and, in a lot of cases, simply what they THOUGHT ‘the plan’ was.

        That still might have been the case with DIVSA Marsh… and ( perhaps ) Granite Mountain themselves.

        It wasn’t that they really WERE ‘needed down there’ or that there was going to be TIME to actually accomplish some ‘plans’… it was whether they simply THOUGHT those things.

        In fact… that is at the essence of what happened that day.

        If there really HAD been time for them to accomplish that bushwhack that day… they would be alive. The reason they attempted it is because they simply THOUGHT they had the time.

    • Bob Powers says

      While I am open to the information about a plan to build line across the North end of Glenn Isla I am still skeptical that it was any thing solid but a general Idea to protect Glen Isla.
      It dose not sound like it was more than a thought that needed scouting and those suggesting it again had no information them self’s or personal information to go on.

      Putting a Dozer line on both sides of the road into the BSR would not require any GPS
      co-ordinance nor dose that usually happen. Fire lines are not road building the follow ridges, roads and other terrain.

      I think who ever Ball was referring to was with him.
      Also Cordis had no line of command over Marsh who was actually directly under OPS not
      a Strike Team Leader in another Division.

      I also go back again to Marsh Statement That they were moving to there safety Zone.
      There would have been some statement from Marsh that they were moving to Glen Isla to
      build Line Or tie in with a Cat to Build line.

      The Safety Zone seemed to be their first and only objective between 1600 and 1700
      On a Fire before you move and commit forces you need a clear plan scouted with an objective and the resources to complete it. None of this was done or cleared with the IC
      So was it just a discussion or was it a plan not yet formulated or cleared thru COMMAND.

      Your making some big jumps from Ball being ask to scout a possible Dozer line to an actual
      authorized Plan that takes more than a scouting trip that had not been done and ended up not happening.

      Again You do not move forces until you have a plan and a objective Cleared between
      OPS and IC.

      To be simple what your suggesting is a complete change in the Day shift Plan which takes full Command approval. You are pulling resources out of 2 Divisions to a new location on the Fire.

      • Retired with 38 says

        Yes Bob that is all correct and the way the system should work . However even though this was day three of the fire it was being attacked like an Initial Attack (AFU). To my knowledge there wasn’t a plan for this operation period-other than find an anchor and flank which became ineffective early on.

        But yes, on an established and well managed incident that is the way it is supposed to work.

        • Bob Powers says

          I did like your Hail Marry plan.

          They did not have a written plan in the morning but seemed to have had a day shift plan that wasn’t exactly IA.

          Neither OPS or IC were in the Know on what the Fire was doing North of Glen Isla
          I believe they were over there heads at this point and the Fire was dictating its own plan by 1600 and the 20 to 40 MPH erratic winds.

          There plan at that point if it was one in my assessment would have been a frontal attack—SUSIDE at that point.

          They had a day plan just not sure what they expected to accomplish and it was very open ended and not in writing.. Type 2 short team should have had some clue evidently not.

          • Retired with 38 says

            Absolutely! And although tired from lack of sleep you would think that the transition would have had a little more detail -something as simple as maps!

            Again , the ball was dropped from the beginning and it continued to get worse-even with the type 2 short team.

            • Methods says

              I guess that’s why they say there should be 19 Watch Out Situations.

              #19 – Transition day on any wildland fire.

      • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

        Reply to Bob Powers post on December 9, 2014 at 4:47 pm

        >> Bob Powers said…
        >>
        >> While I am open to the information about a plan to build line
        >> across the North end of Glenn Isla I am still skeptical that it
        >> was any thing solid but a general Idea to protect Glen Isla.

        Copy that. There is no ONE piece of evidence that establishes that there was this ‘concrete’ plan in place. There are only ‘bits and pieces’ of testimony and other evidence that would indicate there was this ‘plan’ being put into motion at the last minute.

        Even Cory Ball’s unmistakable Unit Log entry simply establishes that Gary Cordes would have LIKED to put some dozer line in down there between the sout end of the Sesame area and on out towards the Boulder Springs Ranch.

        Cory Ball decided to also fulfill a simultaneous directive from (presumably) his Caption ( Trew Brown ) to move the GM Chase Truck to the RHR before even starting that ‘scouting’ assignment from Cordes. Ball got ‘messed up’ doing that and then wasn’t even able to get back out to Justin and the dozer.

        However… taken TOGETHER… all the little bits and pieces of evidence could be construed to mean there WAS something ‘planned’ for that area and that it was more ‘generally known’ ( amongst fire command like OPSs, DIVSs, SPGSs, IHCs, etc. ) than we have been previously led to believe.

        Some might still call it a ‘rabbit hole’… but what if there really is a ‘rabbit’ there at the bottom of it?

        It wouldn’t be the first time this ongoing discussion has taken a long, hard look at such a hole ( much to the chagrin of some )… and sure enough… there WAS a fuzzy creature sitting right there at the bottom of it.

        >> Bob Powers also said…
        >>
        >> It dose not sound like it was more than a thought that needed
        >> scouting and those suggesting it again had no information
        >> them self’s or personal information to go on.

        Again… with regards to things that were happening that day… what it ‘sounded like’ from the available evidence and what it actually turned out to BE ( as more evidence emerged ) have often turned out to be two very different things.

        This might be one of those times. Maybe. Maybe not… but still worth taking another ( hard ) look at.

        >> Bob Powers also said…
        >>
        >> Putting a Dozer line on both sides of the road into the BSR
        >> would not require any GPS co-ordinance nor dose that
        >> usually happen.

        You would think that would have been the case for that simple dozer push on the ‘Cutover Trail’ that was just connecting the Sesame area over to the Youth Camp as well. Couldn’t be simpler, right?

        In the (redacted) Blue Ridge Unit Logs that weren’t even released until February of 2014 we learn that both Brian Frisby and Trueheart Brown made a special trip all the way around ( the long way ) from the Sesame area and then west on Shrine Road to the Youth camp JUST to obtain some GPS coordinates for the other end of that (simple) dozer push they were told to do ( apparently by Gary Cordes himself ). They have the toys… and they were in the habit of using them. All Brown had to do once they got there was look down at his (running) GPS unit and call the GPS coordinates back to Ball… which is exactly what he did.

        Page 4 of the ‘Unit Logs’ that weren’t released until February, 2014.
        This is in page xx of Blue Ridge Captain Trueheart Brown’s Unit Log…
        NOTE: ( XXXXXX ) means sections REDACTED by US Forestry Service.
        —————————————————————————–
        ( XXXXX ) calls and requests the dozer to put in a piece of line off
        the main 2 track to the north that will tie into a road call shrine by
        the youth camp. We drive down and tie in with him and get the info
        and then pass it on to (XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX)
        (XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX) We then drive back out to 89 and
        then around on shrine towards the youth camp. I get a Lat long and
        pass it on to ( XXXX ) and there are some engines in the area.
        ——————————————————————–

        >> Bob Powers also said…
        >>
        >> Fire lines are not road building the follow ridges, roads and
        >> other terrain.

        There actually WERE some pretty visible ‘trails’ down there at the south end of the Sesame area ( where the dozer loboy was staged ) that pretty much connected due west over to the Boulder Springs Ranch cattle pond. From there… it was also kind of ‘no brainer’ to push some line that would have connected to those solid rock outcrops on the north side of the BSR itself.

        It actually wouldn’t have taken much ‘scouting’ at all to realize it WAS possible to do what the ‘plan’ seemed to be. Cory Ball just never got the chance to do that and tell Justin to ‘go ahead and push it’ with the dozer.

        >> Bob Powers also said…
        >>
        >> I think who ever Ball was referring to was with him.

        Possible… but the reason I do NOT think this ‘ONE OTHER’ he is referring to was Justin ( the dozer operator? ) is because I think if it had been… his Unit Log note would have simply just said that.

        It’s actually a little mysterious why a guy ( Cory Ball ) that was obviously freely using other people’s REAL NAMES in other places in his Unit Log ( which all ended up REDACTED by US Forestry, anway )… would then not have just NAMED this ‘ONE OTHER’ he was referring to in THAT Unit Log note.

        Actually… if there really was some attempt by US Forestry to ‘mask’ any references to any kind of ‘last minute plan’ in the Blue Ridge Unit Logs with those HUGE redactions… then its a wonder they missed this entry from Cory Ball saying he was specifically assigned by Cordes to ‘check that out ASAP’.

        Maybe we are seeing an actual SCREW UP here on the part of US Foresty.
        Maybe they meant to REDACT that line of Ball’s, too, but they just missed it.

        >> Bob Powers also said…
        >>
        >> Also Cordis had no line of command over Marsh who was
        >> actually directly under OPS not a Strike Team Leader in another Division.

        On the ‘org chart’… no… but I think the ‘org chart’ was somewhere in the same place where the maps of the area were that someone also forgot to pass out that day to the people who really needed them.

        They were all ‘making this up as they went along’ that day… and for all intents and purposes… SPGS1 Gary Cordes WAS the ‘acting Division Z SUP’ for that southeast part of the fire that entire day.

        It was Gary Cordes who decided where all the morning dozer work should be.
        It was Gary Cordes who decided the ‘Cutover Trail’ should be dozed and that
        Blue Ridge Hotshots should ‘improve’ it.
        It was Gary Cordes who sent Esquibel and Engines to Harper Canyon.

        And it was Gary Cordes who told BR Hotshot Ball to go ‘check out’ that possible emergency dozer push there out bear the Boulder Springs Ranch.

        Marsh would have known it was the “Gary Cordes show’ down there in Yarnell… and regardless of ‘titles’ that day… I think Marsh would have considered him just another DIVS on the fire and his ‘equal’.. Marsh *might* have even been considering Cordes ‘Just another OPS’ that day… the way things were going.

        >> Bob Powers also said…
        >>
        >> I also go back again to Marsh Statement That they were moving
        >> to there safety Zone. There would have been some statement
        >> from Marsh that they were moving to Glen Isla to build Line Or
        >> tie in with a Cat to Build line.

        You are talking about the radio, and what Marsh may or may not have felt like telling anyone over THAT device.

        What if everything to do with this ’emergency plan’ took place over cellphone?

        What if everyone on any kind of ‘need to know’ basis for this emergency plan was at the end of a cellphone, fully informed, and Marsh knew that. He might have (then) felt no need to inform anyone else over open radio channels.

        I am not trying to be argumentative here.

        I actually SHARE your opinion here that there SHOULD have been more ‘clear communications’ from Eric Marsh about all this if that’s what was happening and, indeed, what his ‘motiviation’ was.

        But this would be the same Eric Marsh who was asked DIRECTLY by someone in fire command ( over the radio ) circa 4:16 if he was WITH Granite Mountain at that time ( because Bravo 33 really wanted to know if he was, or not ) and Marsh didn’t even feel the need to answer that direct question with a clear answer.

        >> Bob Powers also said…
        >>
        >> The Safety Zone seemed to be their first and only objective
        >> between 1600 and 1700

        >> Bob Powers also said…
        >>
        >> On a Fire before you move and commit forces you need a
        >> clear plan scouted with an objective and the resources to
        >> complete it.

        Gary Cordes thought Cory Ball WAS ‘scouting it’ ( the emergency dozer push )

        Eric Marsh was ( according to all available evidence ) doing nothing BUT ‘scouting’ all day long and it even appears that is what he was doing even shortly before his own death. Was it really just ‘the way to the ranch’… or was he ‘scouting’ more than that?

        Gary Cordes told OPS2 Paul Musser “I need more resources to do THAT’.

        We still don’t know what Cordes meant by THAT in his ADOSH testimony.

        THAT could have meant ‘the emergency dozer push to protect Glen Ilah’.

        >> Bob Powers also said…
        >>
        >> None of this was done or cleared with the IC

        You mean Roy Hall?

        Roy Hall was USELESS that day.

        He was just ‘hiding’ in the principal’s office at the Model Creek School and totally absorbed in TOMORROW and in bumping the Incident up to another level.

        >> Bob Powers also said…
        >>
        >> So was it just a discussion or was it a plan not yet formulated
        >> or cleared thru COMMAND.

        See above. If cellphones were being used then every single COMMAND person who needed to know about this ’emergency plan’ MAY have been fully aware it was being attempted.

        >> Bob Powers also said…
        >>
        >> Your making some big jumps from Ball being ask to scout
        >> a possible Dozer line to an actual authorized Plan.

        Yes… but it isn’t just an itch on my nose taking me in that direction.

        Taken altogether… and including some new things we can now hear Gary Cordes actually saying in the heretofore HIDDEN and UNKNOWN Hulburd videos… there are ‘bits and pieces’ of information here that might be ‘adding up’.

        Just as US Forestry obviously has been withholding ( and CONTINUES to withhold ) crucial evidence they have in their possession from both the public and the people who were tasked ( by LAW ) to investigate this incident…

        …it is just as likely there are important things that were happening that day which they don’t want us to know about, as well.

        This ’emergency plan’ to protect Glen Ilah with some (literally) ‘last-ditch’ efforts might be one of those things.

        SIDENOTE: This is ‘off topic’ but something just occurred to me.

        Did the actual commonly used phrase ‘last ditch effort’ actually originate in the fire service… whereby one of the last desperate things you can do to try and stop or redirect a fireline is to start digging ‘ditches’ in its path?

        • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

          Followup… I went off and satisfied my own curiosity about ‘last ditch effort’

          Turns out it goes all the way back to William III of England and its origins are more military than anything else.

          From…
          A History of Expressions and Sayings
          http://users.tinyonline.co.uk/gswithenbank/sayingsl.htm

          Last ditch (effort) – a final, often desperate, attempt at something

          Originally a military term, the last ditch of your defences would be the final rallying point, your last chance to avoid defeat. William III of England (1689-1702) is supposed to have claimed ‘I will die in the last ditch’, and during the American War of Independence, the Citizens of Westmoreland issued a grandiloquent proclamation in 1798 saying, ‘In War We know but one additional Obligation, To die in the Last Ditch or uphold our Nation’. The expression was being used figuratively by the 1820s.

        • Marti Reed says

          This looks pretty good to me after a quick Google search:

          “Idiom of the Day — a Last-Ditch Effort”
          January 7, 2011 @ 11:01 AM
          posted by English with Jo

          “Did you know…? The expression ‘a last-ditch effort’ has its origins in military terminology. The ‘last ditch’ was, in military terms, the last line of defence.”

          Deborah Grant says:
          June 9, 2011 at 5:17 pm

          “The origin dates back to 1672. France and England attacked the Dutch Republic and occupied several provinces. The Duke of Buckingham, acting for King Charles II, told William of Orange, the young Dutch commander, that his country was lost. William’s reply was: “My lord, my country is indeed in danger, but there is one way never to see it lost, and that is to die in the last ditch.”

          Marjorie Bowen in her essay “William III and the Revolution of 1688” writes: “This expression has passed into the English language, but reference is seldom made to its originator. . . . The reference is to the cutting of dykes , the desperate expedient whereby the higher levels of Holland had been saved by flooding the parts below sea level, thus ringing the Province with water as a defence. William meant that he would cut one dyke (ditch) after another and perish in the last.

          Sources: “William III and the Revolution of 1688”

          William of Orange: A Personal Portrait”

          http://www.englishwithjo.com/idiom-of-the-day-a-last-ditch-effort/

          • Marti Reed says

            WTKTT == LOL!

            So I guess, metaphorically speaking, in the world of wildland fire-fighting…

            A last-minute dozer line is

            something of a defensive

            “last-ditch” attempt, all things considered.

            Unfortunately, this one didn’t have a

            Prayer of

            Working as “planned.”

  25. Joy A. Collura says

    Arizona question. Anyone on here from Arizona? Anyone on here know how the legal system works? Need legal advice about representing myself as well as attend a meeting where for the first time to my life where I know the people at meeting do not want my presence yet I will be there. I am really struggling even though Otis and fed guy you gave me that pep email. I am meeting this weekend for more information and where are the ones in the past month that said they had some—I have to find you again. Let me tell you something for someone we care about alot shut his door hard on me and side to the recent horseshit…it hurt me. Why does there have to be a side on this fire. Or not hear ours on the recent stuff and just opt to choose we had to be in the wrong and state “you did wrong- this is a small town”—slam! door shut. YUK!

    • joy says

      Thank you to local Theresa. I needed that. Thank You God. I just am not use to the door slammed and division and separation when all I have tried to do is rebuild and you “know” all the locals and what I am up against so it was good to hear I do not need legal advice and just relax. I just despise this slander is all and not looking forward to Monday so was hoping to have legal representation for that day but Theresa read all I gave to Chief Ben Palm and knows the other person and she is straight up person and if I was in the wrong SHE WOULD TELL ME and she agrees after all we have seen and she knows so I feel better, Sonny don’t care either way. He just feels it can’t go anywhere because he has no ground to stand on just b.s. and ruin others views on the hikers- who cares. I care though especially ruining relations with the person in charge of Sonny’s place…that could make or break that and that is not nice. I guess like Theresa said keep being gentle and soft yet firm to my letter/facts and it will all be okay. Marti- we are seeing that guy again and after I write this I am going to address him why two days now we can be over 30 miles from Yarnell and seeing him. Way strange. ODD!

      • Joy A. Collura says

        we were led to a lawyer and did receive good information from a lawyer who goes up against state and federals—

        smiles.
        thank God too.

    • Marti Reed says

      Joy~

      Even though your later post says, in essence, that you have been helped and no longer seem to feel you need legal counsel……

      All things considered…..

      If I were you, I would definitely be doing some “checking around” to find someone who could, if needed, provide that legal counsel.

      I’m sorry the community has been split asunder by all of this, but I’m really not surprised. There are a lot of competing interests here, and the way this whole “investigation” thing has proceeded, it hasn’t had any concern for how regular people on the ground are being affected by it.

      Remember, the “powers that be” have a vested interest in keeping people divided, when their interests are being, possibly, threatened. Which I definitely think is the case here.

      I’m just still seriously mystified and concerned about that person that looks and talks like Jim Karels being there, at this time. Like, really.

      I have no clue as to what may be happening in all of this, and as it relates to you.

      But, truly, all things considered, if I were you, I would be doing some serious looking into possible lawyers, just in case.

      Maybe, I’m thinking, all things considered, JD himself, all things considered, might be a reliable resource in this. As a matter of fact, if I were you, I would definitely ask him.

      • Marti Reed says

        When I was up in Flagstaff, in the second half of the 1980’s, working on a bunch of environmental and Native American land issues, we had an Environmental Lawyer who was working with us. He was EXTREMELY valuable to us in what we were doing.

        I didn’t ASSUME I would need him, personally, but it really helped to be able to work with him and talk with him and know he had the expertise to advise us if we needed that.

        Not ALL lawyers are “dubious.” But you have to be careful. I’ve seen lawyers betray the people they were, supposedly, “representing.”

        I really think both you and Sonny, might do well to search (via the internet or “in real life” connections) for lawyers in your neck of the woods who might be interested in/concerned about what you are discovering and experiencing.

        Remember, a bird in hand is worth more than a bunch of them lost somewhere in the bush.

        Seriously.

      • Joy A. Collura says

        I did get someone who guided us for Monday’s meeting. I hope it NEVER comes to it but thanks to this site and certain folks READING it…G.E. ended up helping us—real fine woman to do that with her busy schedule too.

  26. WantsToKnowTheTruth says

    **
    ** VOICES IN THE STATIC

    Since we are still in the process of analyzing the 21 new videos recently released by the US Forestry Division… I’ve been trying various accepted special techniques to filter out radio static to try and hear ‘voices’ that might be there in the static at various places in these ‘new’ videos.

    For example: I am still working hard on trying to identify the voices heard in the static in one of the new videos where Aaron Hulburd himself ( in the foreground ) immediately says… “That’s gotta be Eric or Jesse” and KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell ( standing right next to Hulburd ) agrees and says “Yea… that’s gotta be them”. This was just PRIOR to Jesse Steed’s first MAYDAY call at 1639.

    That transmission they are referring to is absolutely FILLED with STATIC ( but there ARE voices there ) and I have been working overtime here trying to get that STATIC filtered down to the point where those voices can be heard better.

    I’m not ready to publish anything ( or even any assumptions ) about that particular NEW ‘static filled transmission’ ( still working on THAT one )… but I have also taken some of these accepted ‘radio static’ filtering techniques and gone back and applied them to ANOTHER long-standing piece of radio static that ALSO has ‘voices’ in it.

    That would be the very first ‘Static filled transmission’ following the MAYDAY traffic in Hulburd’s M2U00265 video ( also known as the ‘Original Helmet Cam’ video ).

    There have always been THREE ‘Static filled transmissions’ in that ‘Original Helmet Cam’ video just after we hear Eric Marsh’s final clear transmission from the deployment site when he says “Affirm” to Johh Burfiend’s question “So… you’re on the south side of the fire, then?”.

    These STATIC transmissions were heard ( and reported ) by a LOT of other people in their testimony to investigators… and have also been referred to as the ‘keyed mic’ transmissions.

    The FIRST of these ‘keyed mic’ / STATIC transmissions has ALWAYS appeared to have ‘voices’ in it. The SECOND one is more of a ‘pulsing’ mess of static with no discernible ‘voices’ and the THIRD was just a quick pulse of SOLID STATIC, also with no discernible ‘voices’ in it.

    John Burfiend in ‘Bravo 33’ also seemed to hear all THREE of these ‘keyed mic’ transmits during that time since he was actively trying to ‘hail’ Division Alpha on the Air-To-Ground channel and he was obviously listening intently for ANYTHING to ‘come back’.

    In MOST cases… John Burfiend himself seemed to ‘react’ to these ‘keyed mic’ transmits as if they WERE ‘responses’ to his queries down to ‘Division Alpha’. It has always appeared as if Burfiend was just ‘assuming’ ( and rightly so ) that Eric Marsh WAS trying to respond to him but it was just coming out as STATIC filled transmissions when (perhaps) Marsh would key his mic trying to respond to him.

    Using these techniques for ‘radio static’ filtering and reduction, I believe I am now able to hear what that ‘voice’ is saying in that FIRST section of static following Eric Marsh’s final clear transmission. That’s the one that was captured by Hulburd’s camera at +3:22 into the video… just after he had hopped in his truck and was now driving it EAST on Shrine Road ( with the camera still running and capturing radio traffic ). The ACTUAL time this FIRST static-filled transmission took place was 1642.35 ( 4:42:35 PM )… just after Marsh’s “Affirm” transmission.

    CAVEAT: I am still not 100 percent sure about this… but I would go as high as 90 percent.

    The VOICE that is inside of that FIRST static filled transmission appears to say…

    “Structure ONE… this is Paul”.

    In other words… this FIRST ‘keyed mic’ and STATIC filled transmission does NOT appear to have been coming from the deployment site at all.

    It *appears* to have been an attempt by OPS2 Paul Musser to contact SPGS1 Gary Cordes just SECONDS after Eric Marsh had made it clear that Granite Mountain was now ‘deploying’ out in the box canyon.

    The new Video/Audio clip ( with some filtering applied ) is HERE on YouTube…

    http://youtu.be/MngXri85eaw

    EAR WARNING: The new clip first plays the 20 seconds from Hulburd Video M2U00265 that contains this first ‘static filled transmission’, then it will enter a LOOP where only the FIVE seconds of static ( with the VOICE in it ) repeats EIGHT times. This LOOP has a ‘gain boost’ applied in order to hear the background voice more clearly and some people might find this to be too LOUD for comfort. Please be sure to keep your local VOLUME low when first listening to this clip and then ONLY increase your volume to the point where you are not uncomfortable and/or the audio is not hurting your ears.

    I would like to know if anyone else hears what I appear to now be hearing in this ‘filtered’ version of this transmission.

    Again… I am almost ( but not 100 percent ) certain the first two words are ‘Structure ONE’… but there are some alternate interpretations for what appear to be the last THREE words spoken.

    I’d like to hear what some other people think they *might* be hearing there before I say what I believe *could* be an alternate interpretation for the last three words of that transmission.

    ** RELATED TO ‘THE PLAN’?

    IAOI ( If And Only If ) I am right about what is being said ‘in the static’ there… then I suppose it is possible this callout from OPS2 Musser to SPGS1 Cordes *might* have had something to do with this ‘plan’ that has been discussed lately.

    It may very well be that the (supposed) ‘plan’ to try and cut some last-minute dozer line to protect Glen Ilah in the Sesame / BSR Ranch area was completely known to OPS2 Paul Musser and, in fact, might have actually been HIS idea that day.

    I don’t know how the possibility that the very FIRST radio call that OPS2 Paul Musser might have been making after hearing Eric Marsh’s ‘deployment’ traffic was direct to SPGS1 Gary Cordes… ( instead of anyone else ) would EXACTLY relate to ‘the plan’… but perhaps it had SOMETHING to do with Musser’s knowledge of ‘the plan’ and what Granite Mountain’s involvement in it was supposed to be.

    It should be noted that even if that really is OPS2 Paul Musser calling direct to SPGS Gary Cordes just seconds after the ‘deployment’ news… it does NOT appear that Cordes either HEARD this callout from Musser OR actually ever responded before Aaron Hulburd video M2U00264 ( The Original Helmet Cam Video ) actually ENDS.

    • Robert the Second says

      WTKTT,

      Once again, thank you for all the good information.

      It really does help to turn the volume way down.

      I tried really hard to hear “Structure ONE… this is Paul”.

      It sure sounds like it MAY be what this person is saying. Good job at any rate

      • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

        RTS… Thank you for listening. There have been LOTS of ‘hits’ on that recording I just posted ( over 54 hits as of this writing )… but looks like you are the only one who has anything to say about it… so thanks.

        There are times, with this stuff, when I think it’s just as important to establish what something is NOT as much as it is important to establish what things ARE.

        With regards to this FIRST piece of ‘static’ following Marsh’s final words… I think it is safe to say now what it is NOT.

        It is NOT ( as some have thought )… “Eric Marsh’s final words”.

        As long as that ‘voice’ has been there in that static some have thought it was Eric Marsh trying to talk to Bravo 33 one last time.

        Even if I am not 100 percent sure of the words… I am convinced now ( myself ) that it is NOT Eric Marsh speaking. I don’t know WHO it is… but I know Eric’s voice well enough now to be sure ( for myself ) that it is NOT him speaking inside of that static.

        So I believe it’s safe to say that unless some other recording emerges… the final word(s) of Eric Marsh we will ever hear remains the word “Affirm” in response to John Burfiend’s question “So… you’re on the south side of the fire, then?”

        Only a new interview ( or deposition ) from either Gary Cordes or Paul Musser ( or both ) has any chance of actually proving that what is being said there is…

        “Structure ONE… this is Paul”.

        …but if the chance ever arises… that’s definitely one more question you can add to the already LONG list that these guys need to be asked.

  27. Robert the Second says

    Another post be former Sierra Hot Shot Superintendent from the Elizabeth/Logical Phallacy YHF blog.

    “Kenneth M. Jordan December 8, 2014 at 1:43 am

    Sorry, I shouldn’t let my ego get in the way when it comes to trying to save firefighters lives, Although I feel it may still a feeble attempt at trying to explain things to non fire people, maybe it could help those who “get it”. I forget to mention, in the Clear Creek scenario, the fire didn’t “come at” any one as stated. It couldn’t have, because all of the crews had “one foot in the black all times” like we were supposed to under the conditions (one foot in the black means we were going direct using the burn as a safety zone, , going direct means we were removing unburnt fuel from the burnt fuel to create a mineral soil fire break with an anchor in the 50 foot wide three foot deep Clear Creek with Mark 111 pump and hose support.) No one involved had any intention of reengaging, the fire burned 20,000 more acres in one burning period! Ain’t gonna happen!
    To finish up on the statement mentioned before this one, and simplify things for all, about the “you Know” tragedy, without offending anyone by trying to save lives in the future, As far as Human behavior, I might recommend reading the book ” Uncool” By Ed Gutfeld, It basically states that most if not all poor choices or decisions are base on the attempt to be “cool” or try to look good in front our peers, this could include our crew members, the community, over head, or even our family. Lets refer to the Clear Creek Model again, (thanks for bringing it up) the crews basically “broke the cool barrier” by staying in the black and not reengaging during very extreme yet very predictable and typical fire behavior.
    June 30th Region three 5 days before historical Monsoon season, after a fuels warning and heat warning were given for the area, couldn’t have been a more typical, predictable and extreme fire behavior scenario for Local crews, combine this with the Dude fire model, (entrapment under similar conditions.) pyrocumulis buildup, high Haines, low fuel moisture , High temperatures, towering cumulis buildup in the area, and the availability of the IRPG ( LCES, Fire orders and18 situations that shout watch out,) We would then, most likely have to consider Human behavior and or PPP “perceived peer pressure” (my term) or the driving need to engage during the height of the burning burning period, instead of performing the first priority in our Job which is…
    not saving structures, property or brush… but being safe. (as was done on the Clear Creek fire) as one if not the main causal factor in the “you know ” entrapment. Not to consider this as one, if not the main causal factors in an entrapment would in turn simply be an attempt to “be cool” or politically correct, and in turn be a casual factor in future entrapments. We might refer to “hazardous attitudes ” page 6 IRPG as something that would be in line with that observation.
    As far as any ongoing argument of who’s responsibility an entrapment was, consider that we teach all of our firefighters down to the newest person to “fight fire aggressively and provide for safety first” We also teach them that it is their final responsibility and right as an individual , not someone else’s, to turn down an unsafe assignment, we even offer turn down protocol” How to properly to refuse risk” page 17 IRPG to assist with this priority. ……. Now I can go — See Ya!”

    Ken has some good insight in fighting fire by ‘The Rules’ and utilizing the ‘How to Properly Refuse Risk’ or Turn Down protocol.

    • Bob Powers says

      Just to add to the above YHF Blog has called me out 4 times including calling me a Toadie to elicit a response from me. I have not nor will I get involved with Elizabeth’s Blog which is there only to demean and attack Fire Fighters.

      I will still put up my 33 years with out a deployment or serious injury of all the crews that worked under me. I and my people always followed the 10 and 18 without fail. And yes I and my crews have been in a Safety Zone Burn over 3 seperiate times why because it was always part of our plan to stay SAFE.

      So I will say as I have and not feel bad about it Marsh and Steed and the Granit Mountain Crew Failed to follow LCES and the 10 &18 and they got caught.

      I am not talking about the people who are Dead I am talking to all the Fire Fighters out there that need to remember the Simple lesson learned and follow proven Safety Rules.

      Its your life and the Crews that work for you.

    • Sitta says

      I haven’t had luck in posting lately, but think it’s worth trying to thank RTS for reproducing Kenneth Jordan’s post here. I appreciate Mr. Jordan’s advice on maintaining the C in LCES and the discussion of “perceived peer pressure.” I will check out “Uncool” this winter. Thank you both very much!

      • Marti Reed says

        Hey Sitta!

        I’ll make it easy for you. You don’t have to wait for this winter. I have it right in my pocket, just for you. It’s an awesome interview.

        KEN JORDAN
        Retired Hotshot Superintendent | Interviewed April, 2014 | California

        http://thesmokeygeneration.com/?page_id=361

        The part regarding “cool” is in the “Shelter Deployment Take-away” third video in the strip at the bottom:

        “Ken Jordan, retired Hotshot Superintendent, talks about how his shelter deployment changed how he approached firefighting and running the crew, including placing emphasis on training and physical agility, changing the culture of after-hours drinking, and “breaking the cool barrier.””

        He then, in the second half of that video, speaks of his “gut sense” that that “cool barrier” may have played a part in the Granite Mountain Hotshots decision to do what they did.

        As I wrote way down below, Ken and his crew were assigned to the Yarnell Hill Fire Monday July 1.

        All of his interview is really really good. It’s a really well-done project.

  28. WantsToKnowTheTruth says

    Reply to Robert the Secondd post on December 7, 2014 at 5:40 pm

    >> RTS said…
    >>
    >> WTKTT, I am posting this “Bad Decisions With Good Outcomes’
    >> reply up top due to impending space constraints on your thread below.

    Got it. Thanks. BTW… watch adding that second ‘D’ onto the end of your username when posting. You used ‘Secondd’ instead of ‘Second’ for that last posting and if the comment fell into moderation that is probably why. WordPress was thinking you were someone other than ‘Robert The Second’. It’s picky that way ( spelling )..

    >> RTS said…
    >>
    >> I am citing from “Decision Making Under Uncertain
    >> and Risky Situations by M. T. Taghavifard,
    >> K. Khalili Damghani, and R. Tavakkoli Moghaddam and
    >> the Society of Actuaries”
    >>
    >> C:\Users\Owner\AppData\Local\temp\mono-2009-m-as09-1-damghani-2.pdf
    >>
    >> If the link does not work, then copy and paste the title and author and
    >> search for it. It is well worth reading if you are interested in some
    >> of the vagaries of Decision Making.

    Thank you. YES… I was able to download the document AOK… but that link above was never going to work. It’s a link to a file on your own Windows machine. The file got saved on your Windows machine where the Browser normally saves TEMP data.

    The correct ( DIRECT ) link to the online document is…

    NOTE: This link will not produce a web page. It is a direct link to the document itself and you will immediately be presented with a ‘Download’ option window in your browser asking you where you want to SAVE this Adobe PDF document onto your own hard drive…

    https://www.soa.org/library/monographs/other-monographs/2009/april/mono-2009-m-as09-1-damghani.pdf

    >> RTS also wrote…
    >>
    >> “Decision makers often face a severe lack of information.”
    >> GMHS did NOT have” a severe lack of information.” They had
    >> ALL the information they need to stay in the “good black.”

    Yep.

    OPS1 Todd Abel even told ADOSH that Eric Marsh had pretty much the BEST view of the fire AND the approaching weather of ANYONE on the fire.

    OPS1 Todd Abel reminded ADOSH that Marsh could ‘see the WORLD from up there’ and that Marsh told him he was TOTALLY aware of the approaching weather.

    Eric Marsh could see it better than anyone.

    From page 40 of OPS1 Todd Abel’s ADOSH interview…
    —————————————————————————
    1736 A: Uh, so I talked to Eric Marsh, Division Alpha on the radio.
    1738
    1739 Q1: Right.
    1740
    1741 A: Um, we talked about the weather, we talked about the monsoons thet were
    1742 building to the north and the south of us.
    1743
    1744 Q1: North and south.
    1745
    1746 A: Yes. The one buil- and – and I said do you have eyes on both of them? And
    1747 he’s – you know – he’s up on this ridge, he can see the world up there.
    1748
    1749 Q1: Yeah. Right.
    1750
    1751 A: He says yep I got eyes on both, one to the south and one to the north. I said
    1752 okay you can see the one to north through the smoke? He said yep we can see
    1753 it. Okay. I said that one’s making me nervous, ‘cause it’s building and it’s
    1754 collapsing and it’s building and it’s collapsing and I watched it do it two or
    1755 three times. So we had really good dialogue on you know the predicted
    1756 weather, the monsoon build up and that one to the north making me nervous.
    1757 Um, so I – you know I said you – you – make sure you keep eyes on that thing.
    1758 He said affirmative, we got eyes on it.
    ————————————————————————

    >> RTS also said…
    >>
    >> Clearly, the GMHS did NOT fall into the “Decision Making Under
    >> Pure Uncertainty” category. because they had ALL the information
    >> they needed to stay in the safe “good black.”

    Absolutely. No question.

    >> RTS also said…
    >>
    >> The GMHS were CLEARLY in the “Decision Making Under Risk” category.

    Yes. Clearly.

    >> RTS also said…
    >>
    >> HOWEVER, it appears that they did NOT properly (1) “define
    >> the problem” and did NOT consider all the :feasible alternatives”
    >> and. ALL “possible outcomes for each alternative” were
    >> NOT properly evaluated.

    Actually… they may have done ALL of that.

    IMPORTANT: By THEY I am only talking about Eric Marsh and Jesse Steed.
    These TWO men are the ones that took the other 17 along for that ‘ride’ that day.

    They MAY have ‘Defined a (perceived) problem’ ( We don’t want to just sit here ).
    They MAY have ‘Considered all feasible alternatives’ ( Only one puts us ‘into the ballgame’ )
    They MAY have ‘Considered all possible outcomes’ ( We could die. Probly won’t )

    …and they just frickin’ went ahead and did it anyway.

    Eric Marsh’s COLLEGE MOTTO ( which he borrowed for Granite Mountain )…

    Esse Quam Verdi (To Be, Rather Than To Seem).

    “Gaggle up, fellas. We’re moving out.”

    >> RTS also said…
    >>
    >> It appears that the GMHS also did NOT adequately
    >> (2) discuss their net gain (making it to the BSR ahead
    >> of the clearly visible and clearly predictable flaming front)
    >> “in reference to time.”
    >> It appears that the GMHS did NOT adequately (3) discuss
    >> and/or quantify the “various uncertainties … in terms of probabilities.”
    >> And finally it appears that the GMHS did NOT (4) discuss “the quality
    >> of the optimal strategy [dependent] upon the quality of the judgments.”
    >> Otherwise they would have stayed put in their perfectly adequate
    >> Safety Zone. And it apprears that the GMHS “decision maker[s] did
    >> NOT identify and examine the sensitivity of the optimal strategy
    >> with respect to the crucial factors.”

    See above.

    They MAY have actually ( sort of ) done ALL of that ( ‘comfort level’ discussions and/or possible ‘arguments’ )…but they just couldn’t stand to be ‘out of the game’ and they went ahead and frickin’ decided to try the risky move anyway.

    No guts. No glory.

    It is, however, MORE likely they did NONE of that, as you say.
    They were most likely acting out of ingrained HABIT with their ‘decision making’ process.
    Just another day at work. No big whoop.

    >> RTS also said…
    >>
    >> So, the GMHS supervisors. I allege made bad decisions out of habit, “without going
    >> through the decision making process steps systematically” and without following
    >> the WFF standards of LCES and the Ten Standard Fire Orders and the guidelines
    >> under the 18 Watch Out Situations. I allege that the research paper conclusion in the
    >> above paragraph fits quite accurately in describing why things happened they way
    >> they did that day on 30 June 2013.
    >>
    >> Bad Decisions with Prior Good Outcomes.

    Have to agree.

    Keyword = HABIT

    People don’t ‘suddenly’ change their decision making habits on any particular Sunday.
    They ‘do as they always do’.

    According to the only member of that crew that LIVED that day, this ‘do as they always do’ with regards to LCES and the 10 and 18 was just (quote) “Hillbilly stuff”.

    Pretty much everything Brendan McDonough knows about Wildland Firefighting he learned from the TWO men that led 17 others to their deaths on June 30, 2013… and here are excerpts from what Brendan told the ADOSH investigators when they asked him what he ‘knew’ about ‘Wildland Firefighting Safety Rules’…

    From Brendan McDonough’s ADOSH interview, 10/10/2013…
    ————————————————————————————
    959 Q2: Okay, um, Brendan, what are the safety rules that apply to wildland
    960 firefighting?
    961
    962 A: There’s a book on em. We have our standard operating guides.
    963
    964 Q2: Okay.
    965
    966 The 10 and 18. And I’m – there’s a lot more.
    987 And, you know, some – sometimes you can’t abide by every single one of
    988 ‘em. (…) It’s not a – they’re not mandatory, you know? It’s just when you start
    1010 seeing a lot of those is when you start to reevaluate what you’re doing. It’s
    1011 just, uh, to kinda remind yourself.
    1017
    1018 So – and we study ‘em all the time. They’re there for a reason because when
    1019 you see ‘em, it’s – it’s a trigger in your brain that it’s not safe. And it makes
    1020 you step back and look around and see what’s going on. I mean, you see in
    1021 there, it says, “Fight fire aggressively, providing for safety.”
    1022
    1023 Q2: I don’t, uh, that doesn’t make any sense to me, it’s like jumbo shrimp.
    1024
    1025 A: It’s – it’s hillbilly. It’s what it is.
    1026
    1027 Q2: Yeah.
    1028
    1029 A: It’s old. It’s, uh, no offense to whoever came up with that, um, I mean no
    1030 disrespect to anybody, but, I mean, it is the way they fight wildland fires today
    1031 is, I mean… We’re smart. We’re a lot smarter.
    —————————————————————————–

    I still think someone should start printing the posters that should be required to hang in all crew/squad ready rooms that say…

    “It’s better to be a LIVE Hillbilly than a DEAD smart guy”.

    • Robert the Second says

      WTKTT,

      As always, thanks for your insight on your post. I figured you would benefit from the Decision Matrix post. There are SO many, but this one seemed to be most relevant to our discussion.

      Regarding the URL link, please let me know how you actually retrieved the one you have above. I tried numerous times, obviously unsuccessful. Thanks

      • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

        Reply to Robert the Second post on December 8, 2014 at 11:22 am

        >> RTS said…
        >>
        >> As always, thanks for your insight on your post. I figured you
        >> would benefit from the Decision Matrix post. There are SO many,
        >> but this one seemed to be most relevant to our discussion.

        Yes. It is DIRECTLY relevant. What happened at the Yarnell Hill Fire is ( to date ) the greatest ‘blunder’ in the history of Wildland Firefighting and it will ALWAYS be important for the WFF industry to STUDY this fire… what went wrong… and try to make sure ( as much as humanly possible ) that nothing like that EVER happens again. Not EVER.

        The ‘decision making’ ( or lack thereof ) that fateful day is the REASON for the tragedy… and the document you cited couldn’t be more relevant.

        >> RTS also said…
        >>
        >> Regarding the URL link, please let me know how you actually
        >> retrieved the one you have above. I tried numerous times, obviously
        >> unsuccessful. Thanks

        Well… the URL you posted was…

        C:\Users\Owner\AppData\Local\temp\mono-2009-m-as09-1-damghani-2.pdf

        That was obviously pointing to a file sitting under the ‘Users’ folder on your own Windows machine C: drive.

        So I just ‘cut’ the filename ONLY into my clipboard… which was then just…

        mono-2009-m-as09-1-damghani-2.pdf

        …and then I pasted ONLY that filename into the ‘Google Search’ bar.

        WHAMO. It was then the FIRST search result found by Google, right at the top of the first page of search results…

        —————————————————————–
        (PDF) Decision Making under Uncertain and Risy Situations
        K. Khalili Damghani. – R. Tavakkoli Moghaddam.
        Copyright 2009 by the Society of Actuaries.
        —————————————————————–

        The link found by Google is a DIRECT link to the PDF document itself… so if you click it you immediately get a download box appearing asking you where you want to SAVE the PDF file on your own computer.

        If you wanted to ( instead ) COPY that link to that document so you could post it in an email or something… here is what you do…

        RIGHT-CLICK the actual (Blue) Highlighted title of the document on the Google Search results page and then pick ‘Copy Link Location’ on the little menu that pops up.

        You have now copied the full ‘Hyperlink’ to that document to your clipboard.

        ( But you’re not done yet ).

        If you now just ‘paste’ that ‘Link’ into an email or text document… you will see that is ridiculously LONG and contains all kind of CRAP at that front that is going to cause a ‘redirect’ through Google’s own Servers.

        That is because Google is ALWAYS ‘watching everything you do’ and they will be RECORDING what search links you have clicked on before actually sending you to the page you want.

        The way to defeat this ‘tracking’ by Google is to look at the URL yourself you
        just copied using ‘Copy Link Location’.

        Way out to the right is a CGI query field that starts with the prefix ‘url=’ and then has the ACTUAL link to the document you want to see starting with ‘http’.

        Just cut that URL out of that long pile of Google crap and now you have the ACTUAL link to the ACTUAL document you want to look at… and you can access that document without going through Google’s ‘recording’ scheme.

  29. Eric says

    I haven’t visited here in a while. (Several Chapters) I don’t have much of an attention span to begin with and it completely shuts off when the ” back and forth stuff” and insults starts. I am asking everyone to humor me and In two or three sentences, what is everyone’s current working theory about why GM bumped from the black and into that chute/box canyon? Sometimes it is good to put all the working theories on the table and see where everyone is at….
    -My theory Is; they were asked to move and go down below. I’m not convinced who asked and I don’t think it was a direct order. I do think the pressure of the “show” going to shit and GM wanting to look solid on a local fire for their crew reputation and ultimately their future, weighted on there decision to bump out of the black. I’ve always thought the truth lied in the cell phone conversations…My 2 cents…

    • Joy A. Collura says

      exactly Eric. Sonny shares some of your views and I share some of your views—Sonny on the being asked to go down and Joy for the cell phones which I said from day one too.

      • Joy A. Collura says

        anyone here—if you know any neat health sites—open to suggestion—have to lower the bilirubin count alot and the list goes on—so comparing the different labs and tests and some still absorbing and some right on—I am beat tired so maybe next week I will get into it more but always like good medical health sites—

        sure is good to see Eric back around—

    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

      Reply to Eric post on December 7, 2014 at 10:03 pm

      >> Eric said…
      >>
      >> I am asking everyone to humor me and In two or three sentences,
      >> what is everyone’s current working theory about why GM bumped
      >> from the black and into that chute/box canyon?

      In ‘two or three sentences’. Seriously? Okay… I’ll give it a shot…

      NOTE: Any reference to THEY below ONLY means either Eric Marsh and/or Jesse Steed.
      ‘They’ were the ones who led 17 other guys to their deaths that day.

      1) A Hotshot crew got caught on a ridge on a bad fire… but they were totally SAFE there.
      2) Something happened to make them forget that and try to please someone else.
      3) They ignored almost every rule they were ever taught… and they died horrible deaths.

      >> Eric also said…
      >>
      >> Sometimes it is good to put all the working theories on the table and
      >> see where everyone is at….
      >>
      >> My theory Is; they were asked to move and go down below.

      There is actually a continual body of evidence emerging that does support this.

      We have left the ‘no direct communications with them’ bullshit from the original SAIR report far behind. There were ALL KINDS of ‘direct communications’ with both DIVSA Eric Marsh and ‘Granite Mountain’ during the time the SAIT would have us believe there was a ‘blackout’ and that no one was either talking to them OR knew where they were OR what they were doing.

      >> Eric also said…
      >>
      >> I’m not convinced who asked

      That still remains a mystery.

      >> and I don’t think it was a direct order.

      Despite the fact that these units like to consider themselves ‘more than quasi-military’… the ‘working communications’ is all very ‘nicey-nice’ and the truth is that no one ever really DOES give anyone a direct order. ( At least not over the public TAC radio channels, anyway ). It all comes out as very polite ‘queries’ like “It would be nice if…” or “Can I get XXXX” or “What is your comfort level about XXXXX”, yada, yada.

      The only place we hear the direct phrase “COME DOWN” that was (seemingly) aimed directly at DIVSA Eric Marsh and Granite Mountain is still in that YARNELL-GAMBLE video which was shot at exactly 4:27:16 PM that day. The radio conversation captured in that video still APPEARS to be someone in fire command calling DIVSA Marsh directly and was wondering where they were and what was taking them so long to ‘get to town’. The speaker at the start of the YARNELL-GAMBLE video appears to be talking directly to Marsh and he is finishing their conversation at that time with (quote) “Copy… uh… COME DOWN and appreciate it if you could come a little faster but it’s yours to figure it out”. This is when Eric Marsh then appears to answer that speaker with (quote) “They’re comin’ from the heel of the fire”.

      Even if that FIRST speaker in the YARNELL-GAMBLE video was NOT actually directing his “COME DOWN… and appreciate it if you could come a little faster” comment right to Eric Marsh… there is still no question that Marsh’s “They’re comin’ from the heel of the fire” was him REPORTING to ( someone? ) about why it was taking Granite Mountain so long to get where someone else seemed to already be EXPECTING them to be… and wanted to know what was taking so long.

      The FIRST speaker in that YARNELL-GAMBLE ( the one who *seems* to be talking directly to Marsh and telling him to COME DOWN and HURRY UP ) has still not been positively identified… but there is a finite (short) list of people it could have been.

      It MUST have been someone in a position of authority over Marsh and someone who Eric Marsh felt the need to ‘report’ to when asked to do so.. That’s a short list of people.

      It is generally accepted ( through voice matching ) that it was NOT OPS2 Paul Musser’s voice… nor was it TFLD2(t) Tyson Esquibel or SPGS2 Darrell Willis… but it is a VERY close voice match for either SPGS1 Gary Cordes or OPS1 Todd Abel.

      >> Eric also said…
      >>
      >> I do think the pressure of the “show” going to shit and GM wanting
      >> to look solid on a local fire for their crew reputation and ultimately
      >> their future, weighted on there decision to bump out of the black.

      At the moment Brendan McDonough had to be ‘rescued’ that day by another Hotshot crew Superintendent… and that same ‘other’ Superintendent had to offer to save GM’s vehicles from getting burned to a crisp ( About a million dollars worth of equipment )… Eric Marsh and Jesse Steed were basically left with TWO choices….

      1) Sit out the upcoming firestorm ( which they could see beginning to happen better than anyone else on the ground that day ) in the ‘safe black’… and then walk back to town ( safely )… but then suffer the resulting ‘campfire stories’ about how another FEDERAL Hotshot SUP basically had to totally ‘save their cookies’ that day ( Both lookout and ALL vehicles ).

      OR

      2) Try to come running into Glen Ilah like the cavalry and maybe save some lives and maybe even get their names in the newspapers like they had just two weeks before on the Doce fire in their own backyard. That would certainly mitigate and/or negate the possible ‘campfire stories’ related to ‘door number 1’ above.

      I am sure the 17 other men who had no part in the decision making that day might have been fine with ‘door number 1’ so long as they got out of there safely… but it is still unknown if ‘door number 2’ was the only acceptable option for either Eric Marsh and/or Jesse Steed.

      Sorry if that’s blunt… but you asked us to try to ‘keep it short’.

      >> Eric also said…
      >> I’ve always thought the truth lied in the cell phone conversations…My 2 cents…

      It might. We KNOW now that at least ONE of Eric Marsh’s ( reported ) TWO cellphones that he ( apparently ) always had with him actually survived the fire.

      Amanda Marsh has said ( in a public interview ) that she has at least one of them.

      How it got into Amanda Marsh’s possession without ( apparently ) ever being examined by investigators ( even the YCSO police ) is still a mystery.

      Eric Marsh was being paid a ‘stipend’ for one of his cellphones by his employer ( The City of Prescott ). If that is the one that is now in Amanda Marsh’s possession then it is still NOT necessary to obtain her permission for the ‘cellphone records’ for that phone. The City of Prescott would have to still obtain and provide those in response to any simple Arizona Open Records request.

      As far as we know… NO ONE has ever bothered to try and obtain Eric Marsh’s cellphone records… even before it was known that one of his cellphones DID survive the fire and is now definitely in the possession of his widow.

      Also… the leading theory about where Eric Marsh actually WAS just prior to him appearing on the radio during the MAYDAY sequence at 1639 now puts him out AHEAD of the advancing line of 17 Hotshots led by Captain ( Acting SUP ) Jesse Steed.

      It was once believed that the reason Marsh did NOT seem to be with the men when Jesse Steed’s first MAYDAY hit the Air-To-Ground channel at 1639 is because he had been ‘lagging behind’ them and was still ‘catching up’ to them.

      That is ( I believe ) no longer the leading theory.

      It is much more likely now that Eric Marsh set out AHEAD of the men and was the one who left the pink flagging/tape at the descent point to indicate to the approaching Jesse Steed and crew that he wanted them to ‘bushwhack’ through the canyon.

      No matter where Marsh really was at 1639… he could NOT have been more than a 1 minute and 58 second ‘hard’ run away from them when Jesse Steed’s first MAYDAY hit the radio… because at 1641 he jumps into the MAYDAY conversation ( out of breath ) and says “I am here NOW with Granite Mountain… our escape route has been cut off… we are burning out around ourselves in the brush… etc. etc.”

      This makes either one of Eric Marsh’s TWO cell/smartphones ever more important.

      If there is ANY chance that Marsh was a ‘picture bug’ and had been taking ANY pictures that day with his cell/smartphones… and there is ANY chance any of those pictures also survived the fire… they *might* tell us exactly where Marsh WAS at certain times that day.

      • Eric says

        Yes, It is difficult to take all the info we know about Yarnell Hill and compress it into a few sentences. My working theory here is that by having to simplify all we know, our subconscious mind might actually “connect the dots” in a way our conscious minds cannot because of how bogged down with info it is..I guess it would be like an epiphany for lack of a better term.

        • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

          Perhaps… but I tend to think the only REAL ‘Epiphany’ that needs to happen here is that now that we know, for sure and certain, that the US Forestry Service and Arizona Forestry have ALWAYS been withholding crucial evidence they have always had ( and still have ) in their possession from both the public AND the people chared ( by LAW ) with investigating the inicident…

          …is how much MORE has yet to be seen / heard / known.

          THAT is the Epiphany that needs to ‘comes next’… I think.

    • Marti Reed says

      Our recent discovery, about a week ago, via Aaron Hulburd’s video, that Gary Cordes had “a plan” has really influenced my thinking about this. And this has been really disturbing to me. And the even more recent conversation that Paul Musser may have been in on the creation of that plan has been something I have been, in some seriously sober silence, contemplating for the past few days.

      Really, until this week’s discovery of this, and my own massive amount of work related to it (regarding the dozer(s) and Ball, and the risk this “plan” put people into, I was still quite mystified about that decision, to be perfectly honest.

      So I think we’re in a bit of a crossroads right now–at least I know I am.

      I have respected those who have noted that the possibility that the crew may have had something of a history of bad decisions with positive outcomes may have contributed to this catastrophe.

      Ken Jordan’s reflections about this in the video I posted way below seem to substantiate this. Although they don’t point JUST to Granite Mountain. They’re a challenge to tendencies on the part of ALL Hotshot Crews in general. And his tone is a warning to ALL Hotshot Crews, not a condemnation of Granite Mountain in isolation from a general CULTURE critique.

      I have always thought Eric/Granite Mountain under-estimated the speed and power of the turning of the fire, as did EVERYBODY ELSE (except possibly Bravo 3 at around noon). I think they made a fatal decision to “scramble” down through that bowl, without a lookout, thinking they could they could outrace the fire.

      But they weren’t the only ones who under-estimated that fire at that point. The entire MANAGEMENT of that fire under-estimated it all along. That’s been something i’ve harped on over and over again.

      I’ve never been happy with any of our ideas about WHY they went down there. I just didn’t think they did it for some abstract unfocused “glory.” Yes, they were under pressure from (F*** You) the City of Prescott. But they were in a pretty good position at that time, after Doce and Thompson Ridge, which were MAJOR wins for them.

      But this week has really influenced my thinking. Discovering that Gary Cordes (and possibly Paul Musser) plan is, I think, a game changer.

      And we’re still trying to figure it out.

      Can you believe it? Here we are 18 months after they died, still trying to figure this most basic question out?

      And just tripping over sentences embedded in a video the USFS has HAD ALL ALONG but just, a month ago, released to the public?

      And we have no reason to believe they don’t have other videos/evidence they are still SITTING ON.

      I wish I could give you a simple answer to your question. The reason I can’t is because, all things considered, we the public are STILL being denied access to whatever may be still out there that could answer your question.

      Sorry, but there’s honestly no real way I can answer your question in three sentences. Things are still too complicated for that, in all honesty.

      And, thanks for asking. It’s still a TOTALLY RELEVANT question.

      • Marti Reed says

        And considering this:

        “I don’t have much of an attention span to begin with and it completely shuts off when the ” back and forth stuff” and insults starts.”

        I completely agree.

        • The Truth Will Always Remain Elusive says

          I agree as well.

          And, I STRONGLY believe that much of the back and forth stuff is created specifically to either divert or dilute a particular discussion, or else to turn people off from following the over-all discussion.

      • Marti Reed says

        And, seriously, I’m sitting here right now wondering, after all of this.

        If the simple truth was just that Eric Marsh and the Granite Mountain Hotshots just simply made a huge fatal boo-boo, all by themselves…

        without anybody else implicated in that huge fatal boo-boo…

        Why in the world would the Arizona Department of Forestry and the United States Forest Service…

        still…

        be bending themselves around into obvious pretzels…

        to make sure…

        a whole lot of stuff that was collected by them…

        is still…

        invisible?

        Someone wrote on WildlandFire.com’s “They Said” 7/31/2013:

        “7/31 Some Foresters in trouble
        Ab,

        Keep in mind the 10, 18 and other printed “Rules” are there to protect the employer first. If it is determined that one or more of those were violated then the employer is usually regarded as being free from any “Wrongful death” claims or future lawsuits. I served on 6 Fire Death investigation Panels. I never saw any of those reports leave us for higher authority review without citing violations of 1 or more of those “Firefighter Safety” that didn’t include something. While it is human to err, it isn’t acceptable when it gets down to a situation like this to an unfeeling higher authority. I’ll bet many are really worried but it is probably wasted energy.

        Normbc9”

        http://www.wildlandfire.com/arc/2013g_jul.php

        Scroll down just a little bit.

        • Sonny says

          Marti, youI are the best dissecting these photos and times.

          I think Bob Powers and others might agree with the premise that Marsh and Steed, those other 17 shoulder the responsibllity of going down in that box. Let me say, that if JOY would have had her druthers, we would have perished by dropping off as they did.

          Now in our situation, neither of us were in command and in fact we could split our paths and did for about forty minutes. Fortunately for Joy and Sonny, I had the forsight to return and argue her back up the mountain to practically drag her back the way I knew would save our lives if things turned sour. I would have never lived over it if I hadn’t.

          The point is, those fellows were under a command. If you read their creed, that is written upon a sign at the memorial right across from the fire department administraiton building on Highway 89, Yarnell, you will see what is required of you should you be a GMHS. It states that you must strictly take orders on a day to day basis. Now I don’t know who wrote those–likely Willis or perhaps one of his bosses, but I suppose it was written right after the fire.

          It does tell me a lot though. First there is little room for independent thinking if you want to keep your job. Second that would be why those men took strict orders to drop off in that canyon, and whoever gives strict orders in the chain of command also takes seriously (more so than those of lower status) the strict orders given from higher ranks, and it explains why some did not run to the safety of those boulders instead of huddling into a group in a no-win situation.

          I am told that there was an arguement between Steed and Marsh about the problem of dropping off into the brush. It sounds like someone was trying to defy orders from headquarters– Semper Fi?

          It does seem to me that out of 17 Indians, one would have declined that drop, but consider a command where such strict obedience to command was not required. Miners and muckers are known to be indipendent souls and if you give one an order you better know your business or he will tell you F off.

          At the Ward mine south of Ely, NV, I did have a similar incident happen. Seven of us miners came out on the motor (train in civilian talk) and we noticed 12″x12″ stulls (timbers holding up the back (top of drift or tunnel) that were mushrooming on tops. Now once we got out six of those men agreed with the boss that more timbers and they could go back in. In as much as those timbers were already in close proximity, this old tramp miner ordered my check.

          Needless to say those boys went back in–families to feed, etc.. Their disregard for the situation was OK for a time but within a couple weeks they were caught back in there. Fortunately they were not reght under the cave at those timbers, but by God’s grace if there is, they were able to find a tiny air shaft that fortunately had not caved and I was told managed to crawl on hands and knees for about a quarter mile to safety.

          Now if you see the majority of miners follow like sheep then how much more under “strictly must take orders” mind set would these men risk their lives?

          Thanks for some of the answers to the legal issues here.

          We thought we were sitting across from Jim Karels, fire investigator. When i asked him he said no. Well it must have been his twin, Joy sent a photo to JD and you.

          Toodle doo, may your trails be happy–

          • Bob Powers says

            Sonny —-There is in fact a written direction that you can refuse an assignment if you feel it violates Safety for your self and your crew
            with out Recourse Fire Nation Wide adopted that along time ago.
            So no you are not the Military and No you do not have to follow like sheep
            Todays Fire Fighters will tell you that______________

            • Joy A. Collura says

              —Yes, Bob Powers. 100% correct and I inquired Sonny’s long time thought with Lewis Prison Crew Andrew Williams and it is fact you can refuse an assignment.
              Yet I think again Sonny always felt what young kid trying to make it in the field is going to refuse it when they are trailing in the most dense terrain and he would have to trail back up in that God awful steep grade maze-like terrain to WHAT the other side we took? Shit, let me say the Congress side is tall boulders we slid down 6-14ft. boulders to bear wallow on tight terrain so it was not easier but due to less dense terrain we took it. I am sure Sonny will share a little different direct to you. We never saw the fire the same. He always felt a direct order happen and I tend to think as maybe some missing link happened and its unknown fact and also that Marsh was comfortable in the black and after all we hiked who knew Marsh we along with my original gut feeling feel without all the facts we cannot orchestrate the flaws that are obvious from the outside looking in and just roll it up that 19 men died due to 2 men’s poor decisions. There is an obvious missing element that could clear this all up.

            • Sonny says

              Bob-generally I think people would be trained so they were not to act like sheep–at least I know you or I would not train people that way. I don’t know how this particular GMHC were trained. Going by the sign–maybe Joy can photo the sign–I would say that to be a GMHC member you better follow the leader regardless or from the looks of it your job would be in jeopardy.

              As Willis pointed out, not one was out of formation and they all covered up together–no one fellow would break and run up to the boulders. Now that I know how flimsy those fire blankets are you can count on old Sonny ( if I were foolish enough to drop down as they did or had a reason to take a risk such as saving someone in that so called bomb proof abode), old sonny would have headed fast toward the Boulders. You could get there a hell of a lot quicker than cutting out that thick manzanita and you had an area greater than the “bomb proof area” to which you could center yourself in. It looks like they needed training in more than just how the wind blows during thunderstorms, but also in how damn hot that manzanita can get on a hot and dry June day. I am certain a few of those fellows had qualms about the move they made–to me someone up the chain of command was urging them down there. I just don’t see Marsh that much of a risk taker–though city boys, if he is one, might not calculate the outdoors well enough if they have not lived it.

              Joy is an avid outdoor hiker and was before we met. Yet she for all her blessed experience outdoors, even previously letting off rattlesnakes in the area she was setting, would have joined their downhill excursion and that despite all hell breaking loose on the front and only a quarter mile over the hill with thunder clouds and lightening brewing in the not too far distance. To me it was a no brainer, yet there I am learning that these fellows all marched off that mountain into an obvious brush trap (look at Joy’s photos taken at that very spot they died early June 30, morning) to become dead heroes.

              In my head I try to contemplate how that could have occurred. Did any of the big bosses here say stay the hell out of that danger zone. No, all I hear is they were needed down around Yarnell and Marshes last call as we are ok in the black send Blueridge. Then we hear of arguments and donut doesn’t come forward with all—now we wonder can we trust anything at all? Then we hear Willis saying that is what they do–protect structures—so we say now they became heroes because they died trying to get down there to protect structures. I even wondered if there were monkeys in the Helm’s ranch thing which is not a ranch as I know one, and those monkeys needed protecting. Helms are quiet and that is their right but so it is the right of those loved ones to know the freaking truth. Sounds like when I heard the Willis talks and read the Sair Report and you fellows dissected it well enough, you knew that plenty information was either withheld or neglected during the investigation. The only thing I could think was that someone was trying to protect someone for a myriad of reasons we might fathom. Seems plenty people know but are having to live with poker faces.

              Well keep at it, the news is going to come true eventually–we got too many–and when you have guys like Dr. Ted Putnam, Wayne Niel, as well as non-firefighters scratching their heads after looking down at that basin and comparing it to what was in sight on the north then you want to know what really made those men to opt for going toward Helms rather than chance death.

            • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

              Reply to Bob Powers post December 8, 2014 at 10:50 am

              >> Bob Powers said…
              >>
              >> There is in fact a written direction that you can
              >> refuse an assignment if you feel it violates Safety
              >> for your self and your crew

              As far as ‘turning down the assignment’ goes… we still have NO idea if any of those men were ever given the CHANCE to do that.

              Heck… other than Wade Parker texting his mother something about ‘going down to protect a ranch’… we have NO IDEA if any of those men knew what the ‘assignment’ even WAS that was taking them out of that safe spot and on to ( something else? ).

              On top of that… if the latest ‘leading’ theory about Marsh scouting out AHEAD of Jesse and the crew is true ( and it was Marsh who tied that pink ribbon at the ‘Descent Point’ to indicate where HE wanted them to start cutting through the box canyon )… we don’t know if Jesse Steed even STOPPED at that point.

              Steed might still have been leading the men and then just simply put his ‘left blinker on’ when he saw Marsh’s tape and dutifully started leading that long line of men down into the canyon.

              Where, in that scenario, would the men even have been give an opportunity to ‘object’ in any official manner?

              It would have required them to fall out of line, stand up on the two track, and YELL down to Jesse Steed…

              “Hey JESSE… wait a minute… What the fuck? What are we doing?”
              “I think I officially object to this and I ain’t going down there”.

              A very awkward moment ( to say the least ) for anyone who would have tried to do that.

              That being said… I do still think Jesse DID ‘stop’ for a moment when he came to that pink tape and saw what Marsh wanted him to then do… and that Jesse had his OWN WTF moment.

              Maybe that’s when the (alleged) ‘argument’ took place.

              If there really was this ‘stop dead’ moment at the descent point and the entire line of men halted ( and maybe even ‘gathered up’ again into a close group )… perhaps THAT would have been the point for any of them to now ‘refuse this assignment’… but we simply do NOT know if that’s the way it went down and whether there ever really was this ‘transition’ moment when any of the men could have officially complained.

            • Sitta says

              Yes and no, Bob. I’ve been lucky enough to work on a crew with a safety ethic like the one you describe. I’ve had excellent FMOs and supervisors. Occasionally, a safety or ethical objection has earned a little temporary grumbling from my superiors, but I’ve never felt my job at risk. On other crews, however, I suspect that those who can’t keep their brains off and their mouths shut either don’t last long, or find less militaristic crews to work for. I’ve seen a few “middle managers” who’ve had some years in wildland fire and expect unthinking obedience — they don’t just appear out of nowhere. I’ve been hoping that by studying GMIHC, we might be able convince other authority hardliners that this attitude is dangerous.

              • Bob Powers says

                Sitta—

                And in some cases you are correct especially Organized HS Crews the decent should come from those with experience if the crew has been trained to bring Safety to the Leaders.
                You are right most crewmen won’t speak up but Squad bosses and Crew Foreman At times do. Most turn downs come from good crew leaders to Division Supervisors or ST Leaders.

                In this case the would be questioning there Superintendent which probably held them back, It happens if open discussion isn’t fostered.

              • Marti Reed says

                Thanks for joining us this morning, Sitta!!

                And, yes, even I have trouble posting sometimes. I actually have to “re-log-in” about every three hours even when I’m actively posting. This wordpress software seems to have a really short memory span since JD “upgraded” it. It didn’t use to be so cantankerous.

                After eating and breathing this fire for this entire year, I REALLY believe the real Lessons Learned from it are almost ALL about management, authority, IMT-ordering, short-staffing, command accountability, overall culture, EVERYTHING to do with the upper-ups.

                And, relatively speaking, about 10% about the same-old same-old mistakes that the ground-pounders make.

                Which is why you are right, imho, about how the reason AZF/USFS is STILL sitting on that infamous video we keep hearing about (that may have that Marsh/Steed “argument” in it) may have a LOT more to do with Overhead “assigning”/”ordering” the crew to carry out “their” plan, than it has to do with Marsh and Steed arguing about it.

                This whole “plan” thing has been carefully SCRUBBED, up until now.

                The Lessons Learned that I hear SCREAMING from this fire, can’t even remotely begin to get out there until this whole MANAGEMENT thing is allowed to get out there.

                And that information is NOT going to get out there, until somebody with AUTHORITY can get ahead of this thing and FORCE it.

                • Sitta says

                  Amen, Marti. I’m so glad that you and WTKTT, Bob, Joy, Sonny, RTS, are still working on this. Honestly, I’m grateful. I think a lot of ground pounders don’t really want to talk about this until something new and definite comes out, because it feels like everything about Yarnell is uncertain, uncontrollable, and still very painful. Why talk if you can’t change anything, and you run the risk of offending someone connected to GMIHC? So we operate under the mythos of Freak Accident that Can’t Happen to Me.

                  This forum is what keeps my hope alive.

                  • FIRE20+ says

                    Sitta said:
                    “I think a lot of ground pounders don’t really want to talk about this until something new and definite comes out, because it feels like everything about Yarnell is uncertain, uncontrollable, and still very painful. Why talk if you can’t change anything,”

                    Right. Because the investigations delivered such inaccurate information, THAT’S what the majority of firefighters believe! And there has been so many more facts to come out after both reports, as we all know here. FF’s have to make a concerted effort to look into any new YHF facts. Most FF’s I talk to about YHF know snippets, fact or not. Look at the SAI briefing video…the SAIT is still pushing that as fact. Or the NWCG building a Lessons Learned from the SAI briefing video?! That’s offensive. And like you said, it’s perhaps easier to not talk about YHF for FF’s because of all that uncertainty AND because we can’t change the outcome.

          • Marti Reed says

            Definitely at least a twin. Different glasses from a year ago. Also less of a tan. But same face, same hair, same chin, same lips.

            Interesting.

          • Marti Reed says

            And I’m still asking the question I asked above.

            If Eric/Granite Mountain were solely “responsible,” via their OBVIOUS (which it is) breaking of 10/18/LCES, why are the USFS and ADF still bending themselves into pretzals to withhold stuff?

            As the guy I quoted from WildlandFire.gcom said, all they have to do is prove Eric/GM violated 10/18/LCES (which they have years of experience proving, they’re off the hook for “wrongful death.”

            Nobody has responded to that.

            • Bob Powers says

              Marti
              My take is any body remotely associated with the contact or overhead supervision of Marsh and GM who are Federal employees are being protected from tort clams by Fed Lawyers. It dose go deeper than the Crew If the State wants to throw the responsibility back on the Federal Employees that were there. It is what it is PARINOIA ???????

            • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

              Reply to Marti Reed post on December 8, 2014 at 4:46 pm

              >> Marti said…
              >>
              >> If Eric/Granite Mountain were solely “responsible,”
              >> via their OBVIOUS (which it is) breaking of 10/18/LCES,
              >> why are the USFS and ADF still bending themselves
              >> into pretzals to withhold stuff?

              Because of the MONEY involved. ( Millions of dollars ).

              In the ‘Motion to dismiss the wrongful death lawsuits’ filed by attorneys from the Arizona State Attorney General’s office… they reveal that even THEY were NOT going to be able to escape the reality that DIVSA Eric Marsha and (acting) GMHS SUP Jesse Steed were ’employees of the State of Arizona’ at the time the fatal decisions were all made.

              So Arizona Forestry IS ( and always HAS been ) ‘on the hook’ for their decisions and their behavior on June 30, 2013.

              That’s the obvious reason AZF doesn’t want to just admit their ’employees’ were guilty of either criminal or gross ‘negligence’. Millions of dollars at stake.

              As for the FEDS… it’s probably just the ‘good old boy’ network at play. Yes… the FEDS could just throw ‘Arizona Forestry’ under the bus and call it a day… but that’s not what ‘good old boys’ do.

              Besides… there WERE ‘Federal Employees’ working that fire and they COULD be held culpable in the ‘negligence’ taking place that entire weekend… so from US Forestry’s perspective it is probably better to just lay low, stay out of it, and let it all resolve down there at the Arizona State level.

              >> Marti also said…
              >>
              >> As the guy I quoted from WildlandFire.gcom said,
              >> all they have to do is prove Eric/GM violated
              >> 10/18/LCES (which they have years of experience
              >> proving, they’re off the hook for “wrongful death.”

              That is NOT the case. It’s not that simple, legally speaking.

              • Marti Reed says

                Copy. Gotcha. Thanks!

                Still cogitating……..

                So……

                It’s looking like a combination of…..

                Eric/Granite Mountain deciding to move themselves into a plan communicated to them by, at least, Gary Cordes, who, himself didn’t have that much AUTHORITY over them.

                A plan that Gary Cordes MAY have conjured up with OPS Paul Musser (who had a bit more ICStructure authority over them–except they could, yes, still turn it down).

                A plan that, as Bob Powers has said, hadn’t a PRAYER of succeeding, and was conjured up by them, when neither of them had much of any clue what was happening with the fire on that southwest side of it, either when they were conjuring it up, or as time passed and Gary was trying to implement it.

                What is the potential liability in doing something like that???

                And, as Calvin has said, he believes Todd Abel and Darrell Willis may have been aware of/involved in.

                A plan that seemingly may have mostly been communicated via cellphones, the records of which have been NOT released to the public.

                So…Eric/Granite Mountain headed off, apparently, to engage that plan, with DivAS Eric possibly ahead of them.

                I don’t think they were particularly DESPERATE to redeem themselves in the eyes of anybody. I really think they had already done a pretty good job of that by then via Doce and Thompson Ridge.

                But, yes, I agree with what you wrote way above about HABIT. And taking what Ken Jordan said about his sense that the “cool factor” could have played a part.

                So, off they went to re-engage the fire via a PLAN that a non-certified Structure Protection Group Supervisor plus maybe their Operations Supervisor had conjured up.

                Trusting, I would think, that that PLAN (since it was, apparently co-conjured up by their Operations Supervisor) was basically trustworthy.

                And down into the explosively fueled bowl they descended, thinking they could get to the BS Ranch before the fire got there.

                Without a lookout–unless Eric was, in fact, pretty far ahead of them and, thus capable of serving as their lookout.

                And the fire turned around, as Eric may have even been watching it, and burned back up the bowl and Eric followed it back up to them–or down if he was on a rock above them. (This part still doesn’t actually make any sense to me, to be honest, but whatever).

                And, all along, Gary Cordes is thinking they had time to get to the Ranch and is asking his Task Force Trainee at the Youth Camp to send an engine there to pick them up even while everything is going to sh*t everywhere.

                And, yes, thank you for reminding me that Eric and Jesse were, on that fire, employees of AZ Fire, and Eric was, even more, a member of the Incident Management Team by way of having accepted the role of Division Supervisor.

                So there’s that in the butt-covering realm.

                So that would mean the “easy way out” of just blaming them for violating the Rules wouldn’t so easily work here.

                But I’m still not convinced AZFire wouldn’t attempt to do that, at this convoluted point, in some way, if they thought that would serve their HUMOUNGOUS financial interests in throwing off a bunch of “wrongful death” lawsuits.

                Which would mean to me that they would have a fairly big interest in making public whatever they have of that video that “seems” to include an “argument” between Eric and Jesse.

                Or maybe not?

                This is really a crunch point, in my mind.

                The easiest way, in my mind, for AZ Fire to absolve themselves from a bunch of wrongful death lawsuits would be to……

                …….throw, “agonizingly”, one of their Division Supervisors under the bus, at this point.

                Before they release even one molecule of evidence that there was a PLAN. conjured up by one of their Structure Protection Group Supervisors and maybe even one of their Operation Supervisors, that was placed in front of Eric/Granite Mountain, that was totally doomed to not only FAIL, but endanger the lives of not only that Hotshot Crew, but also a lowly Dozer Operator that we still don’t know what happened to him.

                And I think that the possibility that Joy/Sonny may, likely, have recently photographed Jim Karels in their neighborhood is interesting, related to all of this.

                Apparently, the SAIT hasn’t quite finished its job.

                Where the F**k does the responsibility of OVERHEAD, all those Professional Incident Management Team (those supposedly highly experienced Wildfire Managers) people come under some kind of scrutiny????

                Or do they not EVEN, (if IHC crews are TOTALLY responsible for their well-being–which I generally agree with, practically speaking) have ANY kind of accountability as to the PLANS they make and “ask” crews to participate in?

                On this fire, apparently, only Eric Marsh and the Granite Mountain Hotshot were responsible for ANYTHING, in regards to their demise.

                That’s the sense I’m getting from what we’re discussing here.

                • Marti Reed says

                  I’m, to be honest, right now contemplating the possibility that that Formal “you have the right/responsibility to turn down operations” “policy” (which may be easier in theory than in reality, all things considered) may be, all things considered, just another way for the upper-ups to avoid any kind of responsibility/liability for what THEY do on a wildfire, like this one.

                  • mike says

                    Yes, the effect of the policy may be to somewhat insulate the overhead from liability (maybe not as much as you might think). And certainly you hear the policy cited by WFFs here and elsewhere when they talk of GM’s role in what happened that day.

                    But what hotshot superintendent would not think that policy is a good idea? What hotshot boss would want to leave decisions about their safety in the hands of overhead they might not trust and who are, at any rate, not actually present with the crew and may not know their situation. With great authority comes great responsibility. HS supers have both.

                    • Marti Reed says

                      Right.

                      It’s a great progressive “Just Culture” policy.

                      Unless it can be used against you.

                • Sitta says

                  Marti wrote:
                  >>Which would mean to me that they would have a fairly >>big interest in making public whatever they have of that >>video that “seems” to include an “argument” between Eric >>and Jesse.

                  >>Or maybe not?

                  >>This is really a crunch point, in my mind.

                  Hmmm… pure speculation, but if any ‘argument’ between Marsh and Jesse included mention of orders or plans from someone above them, plans that involved leaving their safety zone, AZF (and USFS, and CoP, etc.), might *not* want that released.

        • Bob Powers says

          We are at the statement they moved to re-engage?

          1. They went to build line at Glen Isla?
          We have a large problem here as I have stated below.
          The amount of time necessary to construct that line with a cat and crew
          6 to 8 hours based on chains per hour for a 30 foot wide line at 1600 that was out of the question.

          2. Nether Cordes or Mouser had any Idea what a plan like that would take to complete, plus nether had scouted the location or checked the Fire activity in that area to determine if the plan was feasible by the time Ball went to scout the location at 1630 the fire was almost into Glean Isla.

          3. Marsh And Steed–Were responsible for the Crew Safety. Moving the crew to reengage still needed to be done in a safe manner.
          The only discussion by the crew was that they were moving to a Safety Zone.
          Even the statements on the Videos indicate the Crew was moving to a Safety zone not to build line.
          The Fire moved to fast for them to even reach the BSR SZ much less reengage to build line.

          4. From the start of the move to deployment less than 50 minuets.
          Why—1600 burn period/Fuels/temp/humidity/ mile and a half fire front/
          and number ONE a storm front that was predicted with erratic winds
          A simple but complete scenario for disaster all known and predictable.

          5. A IC not even paying attention to his Job. A OPS not pulling people out with the predictions and getting them into SZ’s Or seriously discussing a frontal attack with Hand Crews in 10 foot brush at that time of day.
          And GM decides to move into unburned fuel with a Fire Front not 3/4 of a mile from them with the activity increasing and the Front and wind pre diction.

          6. The only one that ordered the Crew to move out of the safe Black was Marsh he was the only one with the final authority.
          The only information we here is the were moving to there Safety Zone
          Nothing about re-engage or to build line in Glen Isla.

          For what ever reason the FATEL decision was to move at all.
          and to move without LCES. So Marsh and Steed Failed to do what they should have done and failed to provide safety to accomplish the move.
          It is just that simple— Past bad decisions with Good Outcomes—Simply ignored the rules as not needing to be followed THERE OLD HILLBILLY RULES NOT FOR MODERAN DAY FF’s

          • Retired with 38 says

            Here is my guess – they weren’t going to build line they were going to fire the dozer line as a last ditch effort to save the community.
            I know others will disagree but this is basically the “hail mary pass” -not enough resources, everything going to shit, and a shot crew can help with this no win scenario

            • Bob Powers says

              Yes probably so— and they had a cat and the BR Hot Shots so why bring in GM who would take longer to get there?
              They flat ran out of time to make that attempt with any one.
              The fire ran across the dozer line as it was only 1 blade wide
              by roughly 1615 not a good plan at 1630.

              • Retired with 38 says

                Yep, one blade wide was notgoing to hold it. BR was assigned else ware (I think), although I am not sure BR was ever really “assigned” to anything

              • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                >> Bob Powers said…
                >>
                >> Yes probably so— and they had a cat and
                >> the BR Hot Shots so why bring in GM who
                >> would take longer to get there?

                The explanation for that all comes down to TIMING.

                If, when SPGS1 Gary Cordes ( and/or OPS2 Paul Musser ) realized they needed to do SOMETHING to try and ‘skirt’ the fire around Glen Ilah… they did NOT know that Blue Ridge had already gone into ‘evacuation mode’ and they were actually abandoning that ‘Cutover Trail’ dozer line improvement project ( which was designed to try and keep fire out of Yarnell )…

                Then it would have made perfect sense ( to Cordes ) that he needed that OTHER Hotshot crew to ‘come down’ ( with their 4 chainsaws and drip torches ) to help ‘finish’ the other emergency dozer push in front of Glen Ilah.

                We CANNOT make the following Unit Log entry from Blue Ridge Hotshot Cory Ball just ‘go away’…

                ——————————————————–
                Structure group one assigns me and ONE OTHER to
                locate possibility of DOZER LINE to southwest of Yarnell.
                ——————————————————–

                It appears in his official (signed) Unit Log shortly after he made a ‘1600’ time notation… but it’s a few lines down from that and so there’s no telling what TIME Cory Ball is really saying he got this ‘assignment’ from SPGS1 Gary Cordes.

                Let’s say it was 1604 when Cordes gave Ball that ‘new assignment’.

                At 1604… Gary Cordes still did NOT know that Blue Ridge was already in ‘evacuation mode’ out there on that other dozer line connecting to the Youth Camp.

                According to the Arizona Forestry SAIT report… 1604 is the EXACT moment those men ‘gaggled up’ and started heading SOUTH out of the ‘safe black’ up there by the anchor point.

                Curious timing.

                Cordes could have called Marsh either just BEFORE or just AFTER he gave that ‘new assignment’ to Cory Ball and the dozer… and told Marsh all about this ‘new plan’.

                • FIRE20+ says

                  Curious indeed.

                  Don’t forget this indication of a plan from Cordes’ ADOSH interview:

                  1356 Q2: Okay. Uh, did you um, I wanted to go back to 1545, Ops Messer and you
                  1357 discussed options. Uh, what were the options?
                  1358
                  1359 A: Basically we just discussed where we thought this was going and how, how
                  1360 we needed to play it and I told him I didn’t have the resources, we were gonna
                  1361 need to start you know, pulsing some resources over to us to support this.
                  1362 Um, also I was gonna need some, obviously need some uh, air support to start,
                  1363 start working that. Uh, we knew once it hit that ridge line that we’re gonna be
                  1364 in trouble, ‘cause there was a lot of homes that were speckled all around in
                  1365 that, in that area. So it was basically, you know, uh, assist with the evacuation
                  1366 uh, try to get this thing painted up a little bit with some air, air support and uh,
                  1367 start pulsing us some, some resources down.

                    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                      It is still absolutely ASTOUNDING that when SPGS1 Gary Cordes’ ADOSH interview reached this point and all this ‘vague’ crap started to flow out of Cordes’ mouth… that not one of the investigators stopped him and said… “Whoa there, sparky… slow down. Exactly WHAT are you talking about here. Back up the train and let’s hear some specifics.”

                    • FIRE20+ says

                      Agree WTKTT, every single time I re-read one of these interviews (listening to them is too painful but contextually revealing) I wonder WTF? Seriously, trained interview professional or not, retired and experienced WFF (I wonder if ADOSH ever considered using young, current firefighters for interviews instead of retired, dated firefighters??), etc etc…what were they thinking???

                    • Marti Reed says

                      FIRE20+, you wrote:

                      “Agree WTKTT, every single time I re-read one of these interviews (listening to them is too painful but contextually revealing)”

                      So true.

                      The other “place” in the interviews that I found almost too painful to listen to/read is in the interview with Shumate regarding the ordering of the Type 2 Short Team.

                      It’s just agonizing, especially after reading the report, which put such a HUGE emphasis on that as a major factor in setting the Chaos Stage for Sunday.

                      That must have been a “Hindsight Judgement Call” or something, because in the interview they kinda sorta circled around this decision without ever actually asking ANYTHING about it.

                      And none of their interviews with the higher ups in Phoenix, who actually MADE that call that Shumate just went along with, even remotely approach getting at WHY they made that decision. They don’t talk about it at all.

                      It’s just SITTING THERE.

    • calvin says

      I think GM moved because there was a plan to build line, with others resources, including a dozer, to help protect Glen Isla. I personally think Todd abel knew they were moving along with others, including Cordes and probably Willis. As well as several BRH. And I agree, most of this planning effort took place over cell phones.

      • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

        We CANNOT make the following Unit Log entry from Blue Ridge Hotshot Cory Ball just ‘go away’…
        This ‘theory’ has ALWAYS been possible… and looks more and more plausible with every new little ‘tidbit’ of evidence that emerges.

        Bottom line is we CANNOT make the following official Unit Log entry from Blue Ridge Hotshot ( and acting HEQB for the dozer ) Cory Ball just ‘go away’…

        ————————————————
        Structure group one assigns me and ONE OTHER to
        locate possibility of DOZER LINE to southwest of Yarnell.
        ——————————————————–——–

        It appears in his official (signed) Unit Log shortly after he made a ‘1600’ time notation. It’s a few lines down from his ‘1600’ notation so let’s assume TWO things…

        1) Cory Ball’s 1600 time notation is CORRECT in his log.
        2) This line entry just below that refers to something that happened right
        in that 1600 timeframe or just a minute or two after that.

        So let’s call it 1602 when Ball says he was given this ‘new assignment’ from SPGS1 Gary Cordes to go ‘sout out’ a new emergency dozer line that would connect from the bottom of the Sesame area on over to the Boulder Springs Ranch cattle pond… and then ( perhaps ) right on over to connect with the rock outcrops of the ‘bomb-proof’ Safety Zone of the Boulder Springs Ranch itself.

        The official Arizona Forestry SAIT report says they believe that the men ‘gaggled up’ and left the ‘safe black’ and headed south at exactly 1604 ( the moment Parker texted his photo to his mother ).

        1602 – Ball says he was given this ‘new assignment’ from Gary Cordes.
        1604 – SAIT says the men suddenly ‘gaggled up’ and headed for the BSR.

        Curious timing there.

        Just enough time in-between for a ‘cellphone’ call out to Eric Marsh telling him all about the ‘new plan’ that was already ‘in the works’ down there next to the Boulder Springs Ranch… and could really use 4 chainsaws and some drip torches to ‘finish the project’.

        • calvin says

          Wtk. It appears that Eric started scouting south around 1530, possibly. And I think it is possible that he was petty far south by the time MacKenzie shoots the video where we hear Steed updating him on the fires progression. I think that it is possible that the plan was actually developed around 1530. And I would also venture a guess that marsh was included in formulating the plan. By cell phone?

          • calvin says

            Also. At 1542 we hear Marsh announce that the fire has crossed the retardant line. At 1550 Eric panebaker notes that the next retardant drops will be on the south side of the fire. And then we hear abel tell marsh air support asap. How much retardant was delivered, between 1550 and 1637? How much was delivered on the south side of the fire? Wtf happened? What exactly does asap mean in the wff world? I come from a medical background where asap means as soon as possible. As in, life or death type situation s.

            • Marti Reed says

              There was no afternoon retardant drop in that south area until the 4:33 drop that started the line they eventually put down from southwest (from that drop) to northeast all the way across the “top” of Yarnell.

              The drops after the earlier west-east Bravo3-directed drop across the bowl (that eventually got burned over) were all in the Model Creek Road/Sickles Road area, since that was where the fire was burning towards, until it turned around and started burning south.

          • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

            Calvin… make no mistake… I have ALWAYS thought this idea of last minute dozer line being directly related to why GM suddenly ‘gaggled up’ and left the safe black is totally possible… but where are you getting the idea that Marsh might have already been scouting SOUTH as early as 1530?

            • Marti Reed says

              That was one of my questions in my mind to ask Calvin, also.

              And, also, I’m sitting here cogitating about the idea that this “planning” could have been going on as early as 3:30.

              That was well before Musser got over to meet in person with Cordes.

              At 3:30-ish, Musser was “overseeing” the operation to protect the structures in the Sickles Road area, which were threatened when the fire turned from heading northeast to heading east.

              At 3:30-ish I’m not sure where Cordes was actually at, or what he was actually doing. I don’t know when he left the Youth Camp area and drove over to 89 to get a bigger view of the fire.

              I think it was while he was on 89 that “The Plan” started formulating in his mind. And we don’t know who all he was communicating with as that was happening.

              Which kind of leads my conniving mind back to the “issues” possibly related to those 3:30-ish videos Aaron took of the Model Creek Road burnout.

              Is it possible there was/were more video/videos he took than the ones we have? In my mind, yes.

              Is it possible some of those videos contain some of this information (including maybe even the “argument” or stuff leading up to it? In my mind, yes.

              Is it possible the AZF/USFS has been attempting mightily to keep this whole thing out of view? Yes.

              Is it probable the AZF/USFS has been attempting mightily to keep this whole thing out of view? Yes.

            • calvin says

              Wtk. I am thinking that Frisby didn’t leave to go toe in with Eric until after Eric decided to go scout the trail to the south.. this comes per Frisby s account he gives to the prescotteers in the new video. I can’t remember the number off the top of my head

        • Marti Reed says

          So my question is, given all the “interpreting” and “ranting” I’ve done down below regarding authority and overhead responsibility:

          If Ball (who was a member of a Federal Forest Service Hotshot crew–whose actual position in the chain-of-command at that time was more than a bit iffy in my humble opinion all things considered) considered what he heard from Cordes as an “assignment,” ie something he took seriously enough to go about the business of actually doing it (even though it turned out be a bigger PITA to accomplish than either he or Cordes anticipated), …….

          Is there any reason why Eric/Granite Mountain wouldn’t have considered something similar coming from Gary Cordes, or EVEN YET Paul Musser, or the ‘team’ of them both, to be an “assignment”????

          This was such a half-assed plan, given what even Gary Cordes said the fire was doing, I just scratch my head in dumbfoundedness.

          If Cordes’ call to Ball was as late as minutes after 4 PM, which is possible, he already knew the dozer line they had spent all day putting in, was already burned over, at least up by the grader.

          I don’t remember EXACTLY when that announcement that Eric made concerning that burning over was made (it’s in an Air Study video), but it was, iirc, around in that 3:50 PM framework. And Cordes, according to his ADOSH interview “heard” it (he just didn’t remember exactly HOW he heard it. And, apparently, that announcement was made to HIM.

          And he had already ordered (or is that just “assigned” or what?) his resources (the Task Force) in the Youth Camp area to begin evacuating at 3:50. Which they didn’t seem to take seriously enough to actually do until it was almost too late. And, according to his interview:

          “Q2: Okay. So your, your intention certainly was, or I – they, they understood that,
          1346 that when you gave the uh, command to pull out, that Blue Ridge was
          1347 supposed to go as well?
          1348
          1349 A: Right. And they had their trigger points. I think everybody was really relying
          1350 on that um, that ridge line that’s running um, almost east and west in, in, in the
          1351 upper corner of four and in the three. Anybody – if anybody saw any activity
          1352 on that, um, they were to get out of there”

          So, by 4:02-ish, he would have known Blue Ridge had abandoned their plan and was getting out.

          So he “assigns”/”orders” Ball to go find some kind of vehicle/way to go back and tie in with Justin to start scouting a way to put in another dozer line towards Boulder Springs Ranch probably just slightly after he had “assigned”/”ordered” Granite Mountain to come down off the ridge so they can help with that plan???

          Because, of course he couldn’t “assign”/”order” Blue Ridge to hustle over there because they were, getting in their trucks, headed to their safety zone (because the fire was coming down and hitting their trigger points FAST) at the Ranch House Restaurant (which was much closer to Glen Ilah than even Boulder Springs Ranch, or the top of the ridge where Granite Mountain was, ingress and egress-wise)?

          Okay. I guess so.

          I also, just now, found it interesting that Cordes says, in his interview, that he got to the RHR and checked to make sure all of “his” resources were accounted for.

          I guess he wasn’t thinking that Justin and the dozer, which he had commandeered for/”assigned” to his plan, wasn’t one of his resources that he needed to “account for?”

          Okay. I guess so.

          I’m wondering what authority/responsibility does an “assignment”/”order” carry, and what is the accountability level of the person who “issues” an “assignment”/”order” in all of this “Incident Command Structure” stuff.

          I’m asking this kind of in the same “mode” I asked about the “risk taking when saving a brother fire-fighter” thing.

          Not theoretically (I already understand that) but REALLY.

    • Sitta says

      I think they got asked. I think they felt pressured to be heroes because the city council kept threatening to remove further funding and they had to prove their worth, they were too fatigued to think straight, their leadership was stressed and frustrated, their culture valued cohesion above individual contributions, they were too influenced by structural firefighting culture, they didn’t value the basic rules of safety as a group, they’d been rewarded on prior close calls, they were young and invincible, they thought they could accomplish (something?) and that people needed them in town, and maybe some felt uncomfortably bored or guilty in their safety zone.

      Sorry, it’s a long answer. I think the human factors are at the heart of this, and they are complicated.

      • The Truth Will Always Remain Elusive says

        And, as has been mentioned many, many times, by myself and others, they had already collectively received a black-eye that day due to the near-loss of both, their look-out, and their vehicles. When throwing that into the mix, the pressure to ease the impact of those poor decisions may have played a heavy influence.

  30. Bob Powers says

    Marti
    Brought your question up here.

    Do Fire Fighters ignore the 10 and 18 to save others?

    My basic answer is no we train to not take risks that are not safe.

    my second answer is we at times have to look at the calculated risk to accomplish a rescue mission.
    There is that dam word again (Calculated)

    So there is a point where you make a decision based on experience and I am talking here about RESCUES only the lest amount of exposure and the probability of success.

    FFO #10– is for fighting fire not having to deal with a rescue.

    • Bob Powers says

      I would also note once they were into the burned BLACK they were safe even with the still smoking embers.
      their only real decision was getting thru the flames they ran into before they started up the 2 track.
      That can be done safely and is done on many occasions to get to the black by FF
      at a low burning point so really not a big deal once in the burn traveling thru the burn was no big deal. as you can see in the videos.
      The fire had made its run all they had to do was get thru the edge of it and they were on there way……………….

      • Marti Reed says

        Thanks Bob, I really appreciate this. That’s exactly what I was wondering about.

        These were five VERY experienced guys. Even then, though, Aaron and his co-fighter sounded pretty OMG while they were going thru it. And they DID have that convo about how they didn’t want to become a part of the problem.

        I keep thinking about that rescue on the Deer Creek fire on Lessons Learned. With the helicopter that almost went off the edge of the rock ledge they were on. That was pretty hairy, and there wasn’t even any fire around them. Just a teetering helicopter they had to grab hold of and hang on to.

  31. Robert the Second says

    These two threads are from Elizabeth/Logical Phallacy’s yarnellhillfireblog site. They are both replies from the former Sierra HS Superintendent Ken Jordan who was on the Clear Creek Fire and who Elizabeth/Logical Phallacy LIED about and said she talked with him. Jordan is justified in chastising and criticizing Elizabeth/Logical Phallacy for ignoring the truth, having her own agenda, telling experinced WFF that the ‘WFF Rules’ are worthless, and much more.

    “Kenneth M. Jordan December 5, 2014 at 1:36 pm

    Know what your fire is doing at all times, Weather becoming hotter and dryer, Wind increases and or changes direction. Maintain prompt communications with with your forces , your supervisor and adjoining forces. Unburned fuel between you and the fire. Cannot see main fire not in communications with anyone who can, Terrain and fuel make escape to safety zone difficult, Fire has not been properly scouted or sized up, Base all actions on current and expected fire behavior, Fight fire aggressively having provided for safety first? Competent lookout?(IRPG page 6 #1 Experienced, competent, trusted? #2 Escape route: Scouted for loose soil rocks, vegetation #3-Safety Zones: Back into the clean burn,) If we are not going to adhere to these few simple rules on fires, and try to rationalize, minimize or justify, peoples decisions made on entrapment fires, that would contradict them, and then not use them in entrapment/fatality investigations then we should… get rid of them….. Now I’m really done”

    “Kenneth M. Jordan December 4, 2014 at 8:21 pm

    I’m done here, I really don’t care about you and Fred, who he yelled at on his crew and your immature little contest, or your ridiculous theory about what happened on the Clear Creek any more, you- weren’t-there, “some fellow” would have a name, It is on video, and I did document everything. The blow up had absolutely nothing to do with the anchor point, the anchor was fine, the fire spotted across the creek and down canyon there was area ignition, due to 40 plus mile an hour frontal winds, low humidity, heavy fuel load, low fuel moisture, frequent spotting due to the receptive fuel bed the arrow dynamic fire brands, combine this with in draft from the column, no one was hurt because we did what we were supposed to move into the black, and stayed there till the danger had passed, I tried to explain what happened but it doesn’t make sense to you, Its like trying to explain adult life to a second grader, aint gonna happen, Its also obvious that you dislike the Hotshot organization “Hotshot Supts stick up of each other,” comeon, really? You obviously have no intention of solving safety issues, your mad at someone and you wan’t to make yourself feel better by trying to justify, and rationalize your position,

    Try to have a have a great Christmas or whatever you people celebrate, don’t bother to respond to this because I don’t plan on being on this thing any more, i’ll share my knowledge, experience and insight were it can be utilized, Gabbert, I would stay away from this too, Its counter productive to the cause and your fire genius is needed elsewhere! .You win! firefighters loose……See ya!!”

    There are those that are not even on this site that see through Elizabeth/Logical Phallacy’s agenda, attempts at deception, and prevarication. This woman knows no bounds.

  32. Sonny says

    Those cell phone records certainly are crucial to this investigation. That is why people are unhappy with the results of the investigations and why I think FBI should be involved here. Nineteen fine young men have perished and the loved ones, friends, concerned citizens want to know why down to the last finest detail. It is called closure and however the chips fall regarding individuals who bear responsibility let it be. We have a legal system that includes a grand jury and if need be a jury of their peers should there be culpability.

    A retired cop, Herb tells me that people are not happy with seeing the deaths of these young men treated lightly. He says they will want justice. I don’t see that anyone would have intentionally caused the death of those GMHS, but putting them at undue risk?

    If it were a fact that certain individuals intentionally allowed this fire to continue when it could have been stopped early, would that not constitute a crime? I wonder if withholding information on a situation like this would be a crime? Bob let us know–we don’t see Herb but maybe once or twice a month so it is just a curious question on my part. Maybe these individuals would come forward with more information if they understood these things. It just seems to me that too many people are holding back when they ought to be telling us the real story.

    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

      Reply to Sonny post on December 6, 2014 at 10:40 am

      >> Sonny said…
      >>
      >> Those cell phone records certainly are crucial to this investigation.

      Yes. They ARE… and always HAVE been.

      It is a known FACT that ‘cellphones’ were being used HEAVILY by people in authority on that fire and were, indeed, being RELIED upon for crucial communications between ALL of ‘fire command’.

      Even now… in the latest videos released… we can see what ‘Safety Officer’ Tony Sciacca was actually DOING as he was standing there in the St. Joseph Shrine parking lot.

      Engines are evacuating… the fire is cresting the ridges… firefighters are heard COUGHING because of all the smoke… OPS2 Paul Musser was right there in the Shrine parking lot verbally saying to Prescott off-the-radar hire KC “Bucky” Yowell… “Everything is going to SHIT”.. KC ‘Bucky’ Yowell then immediately agrees with Musser and replies “Yep… everything is going to SHIT!”

      The Granite Mountain Crew Carriers have passed right by Sciacca and they didn’t even have the actual crew inside of them… which means they were still ‘somewhere else’.

      So what do we see ‘Safety Officer’ Tony Sciacca actually DOING at that moment?

      He is on his cellphone talking to someone else on their cellphone about how he doesn’t have someone else’s cellphone number.

      Safety Officer Tony Sciacca arrived LATE to that fire… and even at the most crucial moment in the day he is still just on a ‘learning curve’ and trying to get all the CELL PHONE numbers he doesn’t seem to have but wants to have. THAT was his primary concern at that moment.

      It is obvious from all these videos and from all the testimony that CELL PHONES are no longer a ‘luxury’ for WFF fire command. They are a NECESSITY… and EVERYONE is using them for crucial communications that used to only take place over the RADIO so that others could actually HEAR the traffic ( and remain informed ).

      The investigators should have obtained EVERYONE’S cell phone records just for this reason alone. They didn’t need to wait to see if any testimony might indicate any particular person had called any other particular person. Those cellphone records ( ALL of them ) were as critical to have as any actual captures of radio conversations when it came to fully understanding WHO was communicating with WHO that day… and WHEN… and about WHAT.

      MOST of these guys are ALSO having their cellphones fully PAID for by the public agencies they work for… so that makes it even EASIER to obtain the records. No ‘permissions’ required.

      Any competent investigators would have had ALL of the cellphone records from ALL of the people in any position of authority on that fire even BEFORE they conducted any interviews… so that DURING they interview they could get that person themselves to explain WHO they had been talking to at certain moments… and about WHAT.

      These days… that’s like ‘Investigations 101’.

      >> Sonny also said…
      >>
      >> I don’t see that anyone would have intentionally caused the death
      >> of those GMHS, but putting them at undue risk?

      The Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office did not find any ‘criminal intent’.

      But as for ‘undue risk’ and NEGLIGENCE?… the evidence of that is EVERYWHERE.

      >> Sonny also said…
      >>
      >> If it were a fact that certain individuals intentionally allowed
      >> this fire to continue when it could have been stopped early,
      >> would that not constitute a crime?

      Yes. There is, in fact, something called “Criminal Negligence’… but it’s complicated.

      Here is what Wikipedia actually has to say about that…
      ————————————————————————-
      CRIMINAL NEGLIGENCE

      To constitute a crime, there must be an actus reus (Latin for “guilty act”) accompanied by the mens rea (see concurrence). Negligence shows the least level of culpability, intention being the most serious, and recklessness being of intermediate seriousness, overlapping with gross negligence. The distinction between recklessness and criminal negligence lies in the presence or absence of foresight as to the prohibited consequences. Recklessness is usually described as a ‘malfeasance’ where the defendant knowingly exposes another to the risk of injury. The fault lies in being willing to run the risk. But criminal negligence is a ‘misfeasance or ‘nonfeasance’ (see omission), where the fault lies in the failure to foresee and so allow otherwise avoidable dangers to manifest. In some cases this failure can rise to the level of willful blindness where the individual intentionally avoids adverting to the reality of a situation. (In the United States, there may sometimes be a slightly different interpretation for willful blindness.) The degree of culpability is determined by applying a reasonable person standard. Criminal negligence becomes “gross” when the failure to foresee involves a “wanton disregard for human life” (see the discussion in corporate manslaughter).
      —————————————————————————

      Here is one of the relevant sentences from that ‘mouthful’ up above…

      “Criminal negligence is a ‘misfeasance or ‘nonfeasance’ (see omission), where the fault lies in the failure to foresee and so allow otherwise avoidable dangers to manifest.”

      So even the “Failure to foresee” what MIGHT happen and to take no action to prevent it can be considered “Criminal Negligence”.

      I think this definition can be applied to the Yarnell Hill Fire for pretty much that entire weekend… up to and including the fatalities.

      >> Sonny also said…
      >>
      >> I wonder if withholding information on a situation like this would be a crime?

      Again… that depends.

      Despite what a lot of people think… until the YCSO officially declared that there was no detectable ‘crime’ involved ( from a law enforcement perspective )… the deployment site and all adjacent areas default to being CONSIDERED to be a ‘crime scene’… and all laws and regulations regarding “Evidence at a crime scene’ were in full effect.

      In other words… if ANYONE tampered with that deployment site overnight or actually REMOVED anything from that deployment site overnight and BEFORE the YCSO detectives arrived… that is automatically a CRIME.

      Even AFTER the detectives left… that was still considered a CRIME SCENE ( legally speaking ) until the YCSO detectives officially declared it was NOT… and all the same rules about disturbing or removing anything ( like cameras, cellphones, or GPS units ) from that ‘scene’ were still in full effect.

      As far as ‘withholding information’ goes… there are also some pretty strict laws that relate to “obstructing an investigation”.

      Let’s turn to Wikipedia again for just one ‘accepted’ definition…

      ——————————————————————–
      The crime of obstruction of justice, in United States jurisdictions, refers to the crime of obstructing the work of police, investigators, regulatory agencies, prosecutors, or other (usually government) officials. Common law jurisdictions other than the United States tend to use the wider offense of perverting the course of justice.

      Generally, obstruction charges are laid when it is discovered that a person questioned in an investigation, other than a suspect, has lied to the investigating officers. However, in most common law jurisdictions, the right to remain silent used to allow any person questioned by police merely to refuse to answer questions posed by an investigator without giving any reason for doing so. (In such a case, the investigators may subpoena the witness to give testimony under oath in court, though the witness may then exercise their rights, for example in the Fifth Amendment, if they believe their answer may serve to incriminate themselves.) If the person tried to protect a suspect (such as by providing a false alibi, even if the suspect is in fact innocent) or to hide from investigation of their own activities (such as to hide their involvement in another crime), this may leave them liable to prosecution. Obstruction charges can also be laid if a person alters, destroys, or conceals physical evidence, even if he was under no compulsion at any time to produce such evidence. Often, no actual investigation or substantiated suspicion of a specific incident need exist to support a charge of obstruction of justice.
      ——————————————————————–

      Notice the first sentence above.
      It doesn’t just say “police investigators”.
      There is a COMMA there between “police” and “investgators”.

      Police detectives aren’t the only “investigators” that can be “obstructed” during the performance of their legally bound duties.

      It can still be a CRIME to “obstruct” any official, legal investigation by people or agencies who are authorized to be conducting that investigation.

      Both the SAIT and ADOSH would fall into that category.

      We still don’t have actual transcripts of ANY of the ‘official’ SAIT interviews.
      We still don’t know exactly what questions were ( or were NOT ) asked… or even if ANY of the people being interviewed by the SAIT either refused to answer some questions or might have even invoked their fifth ammendment rights to NOT answer some questions.

      With the ADOSH interviews… we ARE ( for the most part ) seeing exactly what went on in those ‘interviews’ with the ADOSH investigators… but shat complicates things there is that over and over again we see the same sort of ‘game’ taking place in those ADOSH interviews.

      For a lot of those ADOSH interviews… the ‘game’ that was being played was along the lines of “Ask me the right question and I’ll give you the right answer”.

      In MANY of the ADOSH interviews… there was a LAWYER or an ‘Agency Representative” sitting right there next to the person ADOSH was interviewing… and I’m sure they were all being advised to be “cooperative”… but probably along the lines of “Only answer the questions you are asked”.

      That is anyone’s RIGHT… unless they are in a court of law…. and even then anyone is allowed to invoke their 5th amendment rights to NOT answer questions if they think they might “incriminate themselves” or that the answers to the questions might result in any kind of proceedings against THEM, due to their testimony.

      Bottom line here is that other than discovering that someone has actually ‘tampered with physical evidence” ( like removing it so it never enters into the ‘chain of evidence’ or editing raw material before it reaches investigators )… it is VERY hard to prove “obstruction of justice” just because someone might not be telling you something they really should when they are being “questioned” as part of the investigation process itself.

      Once things go to COURT… however… totally different story.

      The only protection you have there for NOT answering questions you might be asked is to invoke your own 5th amendment rights.

      Even then… a judge can decide that it is NOT appropriate for you to be invoking those rights for a particular question you are being asked… and the judge can still ORDER you to respond. If you still fail to do so… you are now in ‘contempt of court’… which carries its own penalties.

      In other words… once you are in court… you can ONLY invoke the 5th amendment if you feel your response to a question might put YOU into some legal jeopardy. If you are trying to invoke your OWN 5th amendment rights ( in court ) just because you are trying to not reveal information about what you know or you are trying to protect someone OTHER than yourself… the judge can deny the 5th amendment claim and still ORDER you to ‘answer the question’.

      It’s pretty hard to walk into court with your OWN ‘agenda’ of trying to protect someone else or to prevent what you know from being known.

      That usually just becomes a dog that won’t hunt.

      • Bob Powers says

        NOTE

        On the first day of the fire and the second it is not uncommon todays world to
        make a low IA effort it happens a lot on many fires. The problem is getting the
        Fire spread estimates right and keeping a low cost.
        By Sunday the fire had gotten out of there expected containment and then the resources started being ordered by then they were 24 Hours behind the power curve
        and the unexpected damage hit very hard in the towns.
        When dealing with fires close to urban interface a more aggressive IA should take place.
        Trying to save bucks buy putting out a small fire can be a big mistake as in this case
        and the loss of private property. was in fact the AZFire managements fault the law suits will follow on an individual basses but the property owners have some fault by not protecting there property with clearance and defensible space.

      • Robert the Second says

        WTKTT,

        I think of all you wrote above, the operative phrase you used was “competent investigators.” They don’t seem to have been very competent and even if they were, they MAY have very well been ‘directed’ to NOT include certain evidence, be SELECTIVE in their interviews, and all the other machinations that go along with feckless ‘investigations’ where they establish a conclusion FIRST and then get the quote-unquote FACTS to fit that ‘conclusion.’ I allege that this has the classic fingerprint of a Federal wildland fire fatality investigation.

        • Joy A. Collura says

          reply to Robert the Second says
          DECEMBER 6, 2014 AT 7:35 PM—Amen.

          I have always felt the beginning of this needed not YCSO involvement due to fatalities and some investigative organization that was not a conflict of interest not just for the GMHS who we all know some of the YCSO that was there on scene KNEW the GMHS and the higher ups so wouldn’t that make them out due to that.

          “conflict of interest?”

          • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

            Joy… the initial YCSO ‘involvement’ was REQUIRED ( by law ).

            There were 19 dead bodies lying in a canyon in THEIR jurisdiction.

            The initial scene investigation was up to them and it was ‘their call’ as to whether there was any PCRTB ( Probable Cause / Reason To Believe ) any kind of ‘crime’ had been committed.

            The coroner’s report indicated that all 19 fatalities were from ‘accidental causes’. and there was no physical evidence of any ‘foul play’ with any of the deceased.

            At THAT point… any number of ‘agencies’ could have stepped in and started their own investigations and that includes the NTSB or any other Federal Agency charged with accident investigations ( NOTE: NTSB can investigate anything if instructed to do so. Doesn’t have to be ‘transportation’ related ).

            The Granite Mountain Hotshots were CERTIFIED as a ‘Type 1 Hotshot Crew’ and were being automatically included in the ‘national resource’ pool for Type 1 Hotshot teams. The Blue Ridge Hotshots were ( in all ways ) a FEDERALLY owned and operated Type 1 Hotshot crew. The VLAT on the fire that had that near collision with the Hotshot crew was on ‘contract’… but there is always FEDERAL involvement there with all VLAT resources. There were a lot of FEDERAL “Bureau of Land Management” people directly involved ( at a command or supervisory level ) with fire all weekend. Dean Fernandez ( BLM ) was even assigned as ‘Co-Incident-Commander’ along with Russ Shumate all day Saturday.

            We don’t know if the FEDS ever even made a move to launch their own investigation ( even though they probably should have ). It was, officially, a STATE run fire despite all the FEDERAL resources that were actually involved. All we know is that they ‘allowed’ Arizona Forestry to ‘take the lead’… but they still supplied one of their employees ( Mike Dudley of the US Forestry Service ) to be the CO-LEAD of the Arizona Forestry SAIT investigation.

            ADOSH was never charged with FULLY investigating the tragedy. Their only job was to establish how SAFE that Arizona Forestry ‘workplace’ was ( or was NOT ), whether there was negligence involved ragarding the ‘workplace fatatlities’ ( or NOT )… and to issue appropriate fines and sanctions.

            They did that. They were basically ‘pegging the meter’ on ‘unsafe workplace’ and ‘negligence’ issues before they even finished their first round of interviews and they basically issued the MAXIMUM fines they were even allowed to by law.

            I believe that YCSO did a good job with the initial investigation.

            I believe they went ‘by the book’ and were objective about it.

            The only thing I wish they had done differently would have been to make SURE there were enough YCSO deputies out there guarding that site the first night and ‘protecting the scene’ until the YCSO detectives got there at first light.

            There is some question, now, about WHO was really allowed to access that potential ‘crime scene’ for HOURS that night… and BEFORE the detectives could get there.

            Even the detectives report that someone ( or group of people ) had been allowed to ‘enter the site’ and cover all the bodies with tarps ( and disturb the site itself in the process ) just out of some fear that the news helicopters would get any photos of the bodies before the detectives had arrived.

            Even then… the detectives did what they were supposed to do.

            Regardless of the fact that ( apparently ) any number of ‘unauthorized’ people had been allowed access to the site all nite and did at least one obvious ‘unauthorized’ thing… the detectives proceeded to document the site ‘as they found it’… as they are supposed to do.

            They first had to use their FARO 3-D imaging system to photograph the site ‘as found’…. complete with all the unauthorized tarps in place.

            Then they had to remove the tarps as carefully as possible to try and get the site back to its original, undistrubed state… and then they used the FARO 3-D system to photograph the entire site AGAIN… sans tarps.

            There WAS at least one YCSO Sheriff’s Deupty assigned to ‘guard the site’ that night… but apparently he was going along with whatever the firefighters who were up all night at the Boulder Springs Ranch felt needed to be done ‘out there’ at the deployment site… and he was letting them access the site to do those things.

            He should NOT have done that… but he did.

            • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

              Bad typo above, sorry. ( More like a brain fart, actually ).

              Obviously the DC10 VLAT did NOT have a ‘near collision’ with the Hotshots. It was the Skycrane Helicopter.

              Paragraph above should have read like this…

              “The VLAT on the fire that had that near collision with the Skycrane Helicopter was on ‘contract’… but there is always FEDERAL involvement there with all DC10 VLAT resources.”

      • Robert the Second says

        WTKTT,

        I believe that the ‘DISCRETIONARY FUNCTION’ (as applied to the individual state laws under the Tenth Amendment) MAY apply here. Hearken back a few chapters and look for my post on the BACKFIRE 2000 court case on the Sula Complex in Montana where they applied the Discretionary Principle on a FEDERAL wildfire, and the Court made a feeble attempt to emasculate the Ten Standard Fire Orders.

        Quoting from Wikipedia on the Federal Tort Claims Act below:

        “The discretionary function exception precludes suit “based upon an act or omission of an employee of the Government, exercising due care in the execution of a statute or regulation” or “based upon the exercise or performance or the failure to exercise or perform a discretionary function or duty. … It applies without regard to the kind of employee or official charged with the breach of duty, so long as the employee or official is performing, or failing to perform, a discretionary function. Moreover, the exception applies despite allegations of abuse of discretion, by the terms of the exception itself. … ”

        Using a Supreme Court case (Berkowitz 1988) they established a two-prong test to determine the Discretionary Function. “… (1) whether the challenged conduct involved an ELEMENT OF JUDGEMENT OR CHOICE and (2) whether the decision involved was the kind the discretionary function exception was designed to shield.” The second prong is satisfied “if the action challenged in the case involves the PERMISSIBLE EXERCISE OF POLICY JUDGEMENT.” (all emphasis added)

        Source: Wikipedia http://www.rmlawcall.com/federal_tort_claims_act.shtml

        Unfortunately, as far as I know there is NO ‘POLICY’ per se, on actual wildland firefighting, wildland urban interface (WUI) operations, burning out operations, mop up operations, etc. There are WFF ‘Rules’ like (LCES, Ten Standard Fire Orders.) and then there are guidelines(18 Watch Out Situations).

        • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

          Reply to Robert the Second post on December 6, 2014 at 8:05 pm

          RTS… Thank you! Great stuff and great research.

          I’ll try to keep this short since we are obviously NOT going to solve the complex legal issues here.

          >> RTS wrote…
          >>
          >> I believe that the ‘DISCRETIONARY FUNCTION’ (as applied
          >> to the individual state laws under the Tenth Amendment)
          >> MAY apply here.

          It’s possible… but remember this was a STATE run fire… and Arizona is NOT one of the States in the Union where public employees ( including state officials, fireman, police, anyone else on the AZ STATE PUBLIC payroll ) automatically have ‘sovereign immunity’ like the FEDS do.

          Anyone CAN sue AZ State Employees when they fuck up.

          There ARE ‘limitations’, however, and that’s when all the legal eagles take flight and the ‘games’ begin.

          >> RTS also said…
          >>
          >> Hearken back a few chapters and look for my post on
          >> the BACKFIRE 2000 court case on the Sula Complex in
          >> Montana where they applied the Discretionary Principle
          >> on a FEDERAL wildfire, and the Court made a feeble
          >> attempt to emasculate the Ten Standard Fire Orders.

          I remember… but again… that was a FEDERAL deal.

          This is not. Arizona is not one of the states that has adopted
          carte-blanche ‘sovereign immunity’ for State employees.

          >> RTS also said…
          >>
          >> Quoting from Wikipedia on the Federal Tort Claims Act below:
          >>
          >> “The discretionary function exception precludes suit “based
          >> upon an act or omission of an employee of the Government,
          >> exercising due care in the execution of a statute or regulation”
          >> or “based upon the exercise or performance or the failure
          >> to exercise or perform a discretionary function or duty. …
          >> It applies without regard to the kind of employee or official
          >> charged with the breach of duty, so long as the employee
          >> or official is performing, or failing to perform, a discretionary
          >> function. Moreover, the exception applies despite allegations
          >> of abuse of discretion, by the terms of the exception itself. … ”

          That is all TRUE… and provides another layer of ‘sovereign immunity’
          to FEDERAL employees… or any State that has also legislatively
          adopted some/all of those same ‘sovereign immunity’ laws for their
          own State employees.

          Arizona is NOT one of those States.

          >> RTS also wrote…
          >>
          >> Using a Supreme Court case (Berkowitz 1988) they
          >> established a two-prong test to determine the
          >> Discretionary Function. “… (1) whether the challenged
          >> conduct involved an ELEMENT OF JUDGEMENT OR CHOICE
          >> and (2) whether the decision involved was the kind the
          >> discretionary function exception was designed to
          >> shield.” The second prong is satisfied “if the action
          >> challenged in the case involves the PERMISSIBLE
          >> EXERCISE OF POLICY JUDGEMENT.” (all emphasis added)

          Again ( not trying to sound like a broken record here… EVERYTHING you have found IS relevant. I’m just commenting back )… this was a case that was deciding a FEDERAL ‘tort’ limitations and the case was actually “Berkowitz vs. THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT”.

          Another FEDERAL level deal.

          The ‘wrongful death” suits filed for Yarnell are against ( among others ) the “State of Arizona Forestry Division”… and it matters very much what STATE law is before the FEDERAL stuff comes into play.

          Yes… I know… FEDERAL law always overrides STATE law… but ONLY if the attorneys involved are good enough to FIRST bypass State law and ‘kick it upstairs” ( if you will ).

          The Arizona State Attorneys have ALREADY filed a document containing all the reasons they are asking a District Judge to ‘throw out’ the wrongful death suits… but neither this FEDERAL level ‘PERMISSIBLE EXERCISE OF POLICY JUDGEMENT’ deal nor ‘Berkowitz vs. US Government’ are ‘cited’ as reasons by the Arizona State Attorneys.

          They have a raft of their own STATE level laws and STATE level reasons why the ‘wrongful death’ suits should be tossed… but I don’t see them trying to ‘kick it upstairs’ to the overriding FED case-law level. Not YET, anyway.

          >> RTS also said…
          >>
          >>
          >> Unfortunately, as far as I know there is NO ‘POLICY’ per se,
          >> on actual wildland firefighting, wildland urban interface
          >> (WUI) operations, burning out operations, mop up operations,
          >> etc. There are WFF ‘Rules’ like (LCES, Ten Standard Fire
          >> Orders.) and then there are guidelines(18 Watch Out Situations).

          You are right… there ISN’T… and that is why the Arizona State Attorneys are trying to say that the generic “Firefighter’s Rule” applies here.

          There is nothing specific in the “Firefighter’s Rule” that mentions ‘Wildland Firefighting”… but the Arizona attorneys are trying to establish in their own dismissal request that it doesn’t matter. A Firefighter is a Firefighter.

          And they may be right.

          There just isn’t actually much ‘case law’ to go on here and if these lawsuits go forward some ‘new ground’ could get broken here… legally speaking.

          ** REQUEST FOR DISMISSAL OF ‘WRONGFUL DEATH’ SUITS…

          Arizona State Attorneys have filed a motion in District Court for the ‘Wrongful Death’ suits related to the Yarnell Fire to be dismissed.

          They list a number of legal reasons including the fact that defendants Roy Hall and Todd Abel have the kind of ‘decision making immunity’ that you refer to above…. but that’s going to be a hard road to go since Arizona is NOT one of the States in the Union that has legislatively established the same ‘sovereign immunity’ for AZ State employees that FEDERAL employees enjoy.

          They are also asking for dismissal under the obscure “Fireman’s Rule”.

          I actually don’t think this has ever been attempted before when it comes to fatalities from a WILDLAND fire. Gonna be an interesting case.

          They are trying to say that Arizona ‘officially’ adopted what is known as the “Fireman’s Rule’ and the ‘immunity’ it provides in a 2005 case called “Espinoza v. Shulenburg” and they refer directly to it in their requests for ‘dismissal’.

          A copy of that ‘Espinoza v. Shulenburg’ deal is here…

          http://cases.justia.com/arizona/court-of-appeals-division-one-published/CV040438.pdf?ts=1396107367

          From the document…
          —————————————————————-
          IN THE COURT OF APPEALS
          STATE OF ARIZONA
          DIVISION ONE
          ELIZABETH ESPINOZA, an unmarried
          woman,
          Plaintiff/Appellant,
          v.
          CARRINGTON SCHULENBURG, an unmarried
          woman; JOHN SCHULENBURG and DEBRA
          SCHULENBURG, husband and wife,
          —————————————————————–

          This document actually contains a reference to a finding by the New Jersey Supreme Court which was one of the first legal ‘tests’ of what is now generally known as the “fireman’s Rule”

          From the New Jersey Supreme Court Decision…
          ———————————————————————
          It is the fireman’s business to deal with that very hazard ( FIRE ) and hence he cannot complain of negligence in the creation of the very occasion for his engagement. In terms of duty, it may be said that there is none owed the fireman to exercise care so as not to require the special services for which he is trained and paid. Probably most fires are attributable to negligence, and in the final analysis the policy decision is that it would be too burdensome to charge all who carelessly cause or fail to prevent fires with the injuries suffered by the expert retained with public funds to deal with those inevitable, although negligently created, occurrences.
          —————————————————————–

          In other words ( and I know this is hard to believe… but here goes )…

          If you are paid to fight a fire… and other people paid to fight the same fire end up causing MORE fire ( out of their own negligence, not yours )… and that ‘extra fire’ caused by THEIR negligence kills YOU… you can’t claim you were ‘wrongfully killed’ because you were already getting paid to fight fire.

          Pretty whacky, eh?

          THAT is one of the reasons the Arizona State attorneys are claiming that Arizona Forestry, Roy Hall, Todd Abel… and all the other ‘defendants’ in the ‘wrongful death’ suits have ‘immunity’. from these suits filed by the families of OTHER fireman who died fighting the same fire.

          1) We were all being paid to fight a fire.

          2) Everybody knows sometimes you ‘fight fire with fire’ and then there’s MORE fire

          3) You got killed by either the original ‘fire’.. or the MORE FIRE.

          4) Whoopee shit. Whadda you want from us? No negligence here.

          Nothing to see here… move along… move along.

          PS: The above has NOTHING to do with whether AZ Forestry will ultimately be found liable for all the PROPERTY damage due to either ‘gross’ or ‘criminal’ negligence. I am only quoting from the legal brief filed that is requesting dismissal of the ‘wrongful death’ suits filed by the families of the firefighters who died. AZ State attorneys are actually claiming the suits are ‘invalid’ because of this whacky ‘Fireman’s Rule”.

          • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

            Followup…

            A copy of the actual ‘Motion for Dismissal’ of the ‘wrongful death’ suits filed in District Court by the Arizona State Attorneys is here…

            http://www.courthousenews.com/2014/10/27/Yarnell%20Dismiss.pdf

            Scroll down to the section where they start referencing the ‘Espinoza v. Shulenburg’ case for the part where they make their full argument about how the “Firefighter’s Rule” should be cause enough alone for the ‘wrongful death’ suits to be ‘dismissed’.

            • Robert the Second says

              WTKTT,

              Most informative and that was the first I had ever heard of the ‘Fireman’s Rule.’ Thanks.

              As far as Workman’s Compensation being alleged as the family’s only remedy, the State of AZ argued likewise when the families of the Perryville inmates died on the June 26, 1990, Dude Fire.

              I keyed in on this one assertion in the Motion of Dismissal.:

              “Here, Plaintiffs accuse Hall and Shumate of violating the decedent firefighters’ “constitutionally-protected liberty interest in bodily security by KNOWINGLY CREATING AN ADDITIONAL DANGER to those decedents and by PLACING THEM IN A ZONE OF DANGER THAT, BUT FOR THE AFFIRMATIVE ACTIONS OF DEFENDANTS HALL AND SHUMATE, THEY OTHERWISE WOULD NOT HAVE FACED..” (emphasis added)

              Indeed, the GMHS supervisors AND NO ONE ELSE placed THEMSELVES “IN A ZONE OF DANGER” and that they made a conscious “AFFIRMATIVE ACTION” decision to do so. They made a conscious decision to LEAVE A PERFECTLY VIABLE SAFETY ZONE OF THEIR OWN VOLITION. AT THE WORST POSSIBLE TIME NO ONE FORCED THEM TO LEAVE THEIR SAFETY ZONE.

              Here is a link to a paper by Assistant U.S. Attorney Mike Johns tiled ‘Fire law’ that may or may not provide some insight into what we are discussing here. He claims to have been a Payson Hot Shot Foreman in 1971, however, the Payson Hot Shots did not even exist as a viable Hot Shot Crew until 1972.

              WARNING:: DO NOT GIVE ELIZABETH/LOGICAL PHALLACY YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS AS SHE WILL USE IT AGAINST YOU. YOU WILL BE SORRY THAT YOU DID

              http://www.wildlandfire.com/docs/2011/lessons-learned/fire-law-mike-johns.pdf

              This is from the “Transition to Incident Command Team Capable of Handling More Complex Incidents” section:

              “Transition from initial attack to extended attack must be treated as a potentially life-threatening event, FSM 5130.3(4). During transitions
              the pre-existing forces will remain subject to liability for their acts and omissions as long as there remains proximate cause between those acts or omissions and a fatality, despite the fact that the fire has already been determined too complex for those forces. THE INCOMING FORCES WILL BE .” (emphasis added)

              The FSM 5130. 3(4) is a reference to a Forest Service Manual, i.e. Federal, so it may not necessarily apply to a State case. Moreover, this was merely AUSA John’s legal OPINION and NOT legal precedent.

              Again, the GMHS supervisors – OF THEIR OWN VOLITION – left a perfectly good Safety Zone without the benefit of a required Lookout, and that appears to place them squarely in the “SUBJECT TO LIABILITY FOR CONSEQUENCES PROXIMATELY CAUSED BY THEIR OWN ACTS OR OMISSIONS” realm.

              • Robert the Second says

                This portion was deleted on the above post:

                “THE INCOMING FORCES WILL BE SUBJECT TO LIABILITY FOR CONSEQUENCES PROXIMATELY CAUSED BY THEIR OWN ACTS OF OR OMISSIONS, INCLUDING RECKLESS FAILURE TO RECOGNIZE AND TO MITIGATE WHATEVER THEY WERE LEFT WITH BY THE OUTGOING FORCES.”

              • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                Reply to Robert the Second post on
                December 7, 2014 at 11:43 am

                >> RTS said…
                >>
                >> Most informative and that was the first I had
                >> ever heard of the ‘Fireman’s Rule.’ Thanks.

                RTS… Thanks again! Great observation(s) and great breakdown(s).

                Remember that as far as the State of Arizona is concerned… it’s simply about MONEY.

                Whatever they have to do, or claim, to get out of having to pay a single dime to take care of the families of these men that were killed while working for the State or Arizona… they will do it.

                Their PRIMARY ‘attack’ won’t be this whacky ‘Fireman’s Rule’… but they ARE indicating they lengths they will go to.

                Speaking of that ‘quote’ from the ‘dismissal’ request document you cited ( on page 6 )… did you know that they have now back-assed right into YOUR ongoing claims about one of the primary reasons those men died?…

                “BAD decisions with GOOD outcomes”

                Here’s that blurb again from the AZ State attorneys…
                ———————————————————–
                The decedents were all professional firefighters who died fighting the Yarnell Hill Fire. Here, Plaintiffs accuse Hall and Shumate of violating the decedent firefighters’ “constitutionally-protected liberty interest in bodily security by knowingly creating an additional danger to those decedents and by placing them in a zone of danger that, but for the affirmative actions of Defendants Hall and Shumate, they otherwise would not have faced.”
                ———————————————————

                Then there is THIS right in the next paragraph…

                ——————————————————–
                For several reasons, these assertions fail to satisfy the first prong necessary to overcome qualified immunity. In the first place, there is no constitutional right to a safe workplace. See Collins v. City of Harker Heights, 503, U.S. 115, 126-128, 112 S.Ct. 1061 (1992). And a state actor is not obligated by the Constitution to protect public employees from inherent job-related risks of injury even where the increased risk of injury results from a state actor’s deliberate indifference. See e.g., Estate of Phillips, 455 F.3d 397, 407 (D.C. Cir. 2006).
                —————————————————————-

                The ‘Collins v. City of Harker Heights’ thing is ‘right out of the playbook’…. but I don’t think the AZ State Attorneys even realized they just back-assed into a place where it they want to go to the matt on this point… then “BAD decisions with GOOD outcomes” is going to end up being a lot more ‘front and center’ than they may have liked.

                “Collins v. City of Harker Heights” is a FAMOUS case.

                It was a relatively simple case where a City of Harker Heights sanitation department worker died while trying to clear a sewer line… and it turned out it was because ( YOU, especially, will love this )… the City of Harker Heights had been practicing/allowing “BAD decisions with GOOD outcomes” for years within their city utilitiles and services divisions.

                The man’s widow brought a ‘1983’ ( wrongful death, violation of constitutional rights ) case against the City and it’s one of those cases that went “The Full Monty” and made it all the way to the Supreme Court.

                It’s ONE of the cases where the Supreme Court did, in fact, decide that there is no actual CONSTITUTIONAL right to a safe workplace.

                That ‘issue’ is pretty much continually making its way back to the Supreme Court… and might do so again THIS time.

                The lawyers for the State of Arizona are indicating, in their motion for dismssal of the Yarnell ‘wrongful death’ suits that they are willing to go this route and cite the same Supreme Court decision(s) regarding ‘1983’ claims.

                Fine. Whatever. Maybe this issue about 1983 claims and ‘wrongful death’ in a workplace WILL go all the way to the Supreme Court AGAIN.

                But there is still LEGISLATION that has to be overcome, which carries just as much (legal) weight as the Constitution does.

                From pretty much the ‘Front Door Document’ at OSHA…

                https://www.osha.gov/Publications/osha3021.pdf
                ———————————————————
                Worker Protection is the Law of the Land.

                You have the RIGHT to a SAFE workplace.

                The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (OSH
                Act) was passed to prevent workers from being killed
                or otherwise harmed at work.
                ————————————————————

                Period. End of Story.

                It might not have dripped off Thomas Jefferson’s pen… but it’s the LAW.

                Arizona ADOSH has ALREADY determined there was so much NEGLIGENCE in that workplace that it has levied pretty much the MAXIMUM fines it is even allowed to do, by law, against the people that were running that Yarnell Hill Fire.

                There’s even evidence in the ADOSH emails released publicly that they KNEW they had they had ‘pegged the meter’ and ‘rung the bell’ on the MAXIMUM fines and sanctions they could impose against Arizona Forestry before they even finished their first round of interviews with the people running that fiasco.

                They finished their ‘investigation’ just for the sake of completeness, but it apparently became so obvious to them that they could ‘throw the book’ at Arizona Forestry so early in the game that they even abandoned efforts to complete some interviews they wanted to do.

                Example: They couldn’t get one single ex-Granite Mountain employee ( out of the SIXTY SEVEN of them ) to consent to an any kind of interview and they were going to pursue this… but the moment even the first round of interviews had them ‘pegging the meter’ on proof of NEGLIGENCE in that work place and they had already hit the point where they could ‘throw the book’ at Arizona Forestry… there didn’t seem much point in pursuing the ‘subpoenas’ it might have taken to get
                any GM alum to open their mouths about anything ( good, bad or ugly ).

                Arizona Forestry’s APPEAL of the ADOSH findings that was originally scheduled for November but got ‘pushed off’ 8 months until next July is still crucial for the AZ State lawyers.

                They HAVE to get those ADOSH findings of NEGLIGENCE either mitigated ( or reversed ) or they are NOT going to be able to stay ‘safe’ with the simple claim the ‘Exclusive Remedy’ of Workers Compensation Death Benefits is all the survivors of these dead ‘Arizona State Employees’ deserve.

                It wasn’t ADOSH’s job to tell the WHOLE story… and find out EXACTLY why those 19 men might have lost their lives.

                I wish it HAD been…. since they had the authority to continue to do interviews and to subpoena testimony from reluctant people ( Like any/all former Granite Mountain employees ).

                But the minute they knew they had ‘pegged the meter’ on the FINES they were going to be able to impose against Arizona Forestry… they pretty much called it a day.

                • Robert the Secondd says

                  WTKTT,

                  I think the “Bad Decisions With Good Outcomes’ would fall into this realm cited above:

                  “And a state actor is not obligated by the Constitution to protect public employees from inherent job-related risks of injury EVEN WHERE THE INCREASED RISK OF INJURY RESULTS FROM A STATE ACTOR’S DELIBERATE INDIFFERENCE. See e.g., Estate of Phillips, 455 F.3d 397, 407 (D.C. Cir. 2006. (emphasis added)

                  Moreover, I allege there was also DELIBERATE INDIFFERENCE that fateful day by NOT following the REQUIRED standards in LCES and the TEN STANDARD FIRE ORDERS and by practicing a PATTERN OF ‘BAD DECISIONS WITH GOOD OUTCOMES.’

                  • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                    Agree totally. There was a LOT of ‘deliberate indifference’ that fateful day and, indeed, that entire weekend… from the moment the lightning strike was first reported.

                    There really is no question about that.

                    The only ‘question’ is whether any standard ‘1983’ claim can survive as related to ‘Constitutional Violations’.

                    In my mind… “deliberate indifference” directly translates to criminal and/or gross negligence.

                    That’s where the ‘Exclusive Remedy’ clause of Workmen’s Comp ( which is all that Arizona Forestry wants to pay ) bites the dust.

                    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                      By the way… in the eyes of the law… ‘Gross’ negligence is actually a step ABOVE ‘Criminal Negligence’ and, if proven, carries even harsher penalties that ‘Criminal Negligence’.

                      It’s a weird concept, and people often bristle at that word ‘Criminal’… but ‘Criminal Negligence’ does not LEGALLY mean an actual ‘Crime’ has been committed.

                      When used in reference to the SCALE of NEGLIGENCE involved… ‘Criminal’ evokes more the ‘morally wrong’ definition of ‘Criminal’ than the more common “one who has committed an actual crime” definition.

                      As in… ( just an example usage )…

                      It was ‘criminal’ how they let that happen.

                      Versus…

                      They are ‘criminals’ for letting that happen.

                      See the difference?

                • Robert the Secondd says

                  WTKTT,

                  I am posting this “Bad Decisions With Good Outcomes’ reply up top due to impending space constraints on your thread below.

                  I am citing from “Decision Making Under Uncertain and Risky Situations by M. T. Taghavifard,
                  K. Khalili Damghani, and R. Tavakkoli Moghaddam and the Society of Actuaries”

                  C:\Users\Owner\AppData\Local\temp\mono-2009-m-as09-1-damghani-2.pdf
                  If the link does not work, then copy and paste the title and author and search for it. It is well worth reading if you are interested in some of the vagaries of Decision Making.

                  “In deterministic models, a good decision is judged by the outcome alone. However, in
                  probabilistic models, the decision maker is concerned not only with the outcome value but
                  also with the amount of risk each decision carries. As an example of deterministic versus
                  probabilistic models, consider the past and the future. Nothing we can do can change the past,
                  but everything we do influences and changes the future, although the future has an element of
                  uncertainty.” However, the future of the GMHS while in their perfectly good Safety Zone was fairly predictable. All they had to do was “hunker and be safe.” There was NO LOGICAL reason to leave when they did.

                  “Decision makers often face a severe lack of information.” GMHS did NOT have” a severe lack of information.” They had ALL the information they need to stay in the “good black.”

                  “There are different types of decision models that help to analyze the different scenarios. Depending on the amount and degree of knowledge we have, the three most widely used types are:

                  • Decision making under pure uncertainty
                  • Decision making under risk
                  • Decision making by buying information (pushing the problem towards the
                  deterministic “pole”)”

                  “In decision making under pure uncertainty, the decision maker has absolutely no knowledge, not even about the likelihood of occurrence for any state of nature. In such situations, the decision maker’s behavior is purely based on his/her attitude toward the unknown (footnote omitted). Some of these behaviors are optimistic, pessimistic and least regret, among others.”

                  Clearly, the GMHS did NOT fall into the “Decision Making Under Pure Uncertainty” category. because they had ALL the information they needed to stay in the safe “good black.”

                  “Decision Making Under Risk”

                  “Risk implies a degree of uncertainty and an inability to fully control the outcomes or
                  consequences of such an action. Risk or the elimination of risk is an effort that managers
                  employ. However, in some instances the elimination of one risk may increase some other
                  risks. Effective handling of a risk requires its assessment and its subsequent impact on the
                  decision process. The decision process allows the decision-maker to evaluate alternative
                  strategies prior to making any decision. The process is as follows:

                  “1) The problem is defined and all feasible alternatives are considered. The possible outcomes for each alternative are evaluated.
                  2) Outcomes are discussed based on their monetary payoffs or net gain in reference to assets or time.
                  3) Various uncertainties are quantified in terms of probabilities.
                  4) The quality of the optimal strategy depends upon the quality of the judgments. The decision maker should identify and examine the sensitivity of the optimal strategy with respect to the crucial factors”

                  The GMHS were CLEARLY in the “Decision Making Under Risk” category. HOWEVER, it appears that they did NOT properly (1) “define the problem” and did NOT consider all the :feasible alternatives” and. ALL “possible outcomes for each alternative” were NOT properly evaluated. It appears that the GMHS also did NOT adequately (2) discuss their net gain (making it to the BSR ahead of the clearly visible and clearly predictable flaming front) “in reference to time.” It appears that the GMHS did NOT adequately (3) discuss and/or quantify the “various uncertainties … in terms of probabilities.” And finally it appears that the GMHS did NOT (4) discuss “the quality of the optimal strategy [dependent] upon the quality of the judgments.” Otherwise they would have stayed put in their perfectly adequate Safety one. And it apprears that the GMHS “decision maker[s] did NOT identify and examine the sensitivity of the optimal strategy with respect to the crucial factors.”

                  “Concusion”

                  “Most people often make choices out of habit or tradition, without going through the decision making process steps systematically. Decisions may be made under social pressure or time constraints that interfere with a careful consideration of the options and consequences. Decisions may be influenced by one’s emotional state at the time a decision is made. When people lack adequate information or skills, they may make less than optimal decisions. Even when or if people have time and information, they often do a poor job of understanding the probabilities of consequences. Even when they know the statistics; they are more likely to rely on personal experience than on information about probabilities. The fundamental concerns of decision making are combining information about probability with information about desires and interests.”

                  So, the GMHS supervisors. I allege made bad decisions out of habit, “without going through the decision making process steps systematically” and without following the WFF standards of LCES and the Ten Standard Fire Orders and the guidelines under the 18 Watch Out Situations. I allege that the research paper conclusion in the above paragraph fits quite accurately in describing why things happened they way they did that day on 30 June 2013. Bad Decisions with Prior Good Outcomes.

  33. WantsToKnowTheTruth says

    **
    ** FIRST DOZER ARRIVED SUNDAY MORNING WITH ‘TWO’ PEOPLE?

    From Gary Cordes’ official Yarnell Unit Log that wasn’t released until February of 2014…

    Page 29 of the 51 page PDF file…
    ——————————————————–
    6/30 – 8:45 AM – Dozer arrived – started THEM to work after briefing on Sesame Street.
    ——————————————————–

    Notice that Cordes specifically uses the word THEM ( plural ).

    This would indicate that when the dozer first arrived from May Machinery that morning… it came with at least TWO people.

    It was only 8:45 AM and Blue Ridge hadn’t even arrived in Yarnell yet… and BR Hotshot Cory Ball did not relieve Cordes as DOZB until two hours later… circa 10:45 AM.

    • calvin says

      This could be way off the mark but. Cordes could have meant he put Hernandez and the dozer to work. We do not see any other person in the dozer in Cory Ball’s photos. And Trew himself was the HEQB.

      Just a thought.

      • Marti Reed says

        It’s NOT HERNANDEZ, as I painstakingly spent a day or so to ferret out.

        Joe Hernandez, Captain of the Groom Creek Fire Department, assigned to be HEQB(T), did not make it to the fire, according to his Facebook page, because he couldn’t “get covered,” i.e. I think he couldn’t get someone to back him up on his home turf.

        We really need to correct this name confusion.

        We have no surname for Justin, who, apparently, was the dozer operator.

        And Trew was never the HEQB. Ball was, when he got there. But, if you just typod and meant Cordes was being the HEQB (which he was probably qualified to do) that probably was case.

        I agree, that Cordes probably meant both the dozer and Justin by “them.” It was neither a “him” or an “it” being put to work. It was a “them.”

        • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

          Reply to Marti Reed post on December 6, 2014 at 9:00 am

          >> Marti said…
          >>
          >> I agree, that Cordes probably meant both the dozer
          >> and Justin by “them.” It was neither a “him” or an “it” being
          >> put to work. It was a “them.”

          Probably so. I just came across this when doing more ‘Cordes’ research and I thought it was interesting. I’ve added it to my own “What we do or don’t know about the DOZER and its OPERATOR” notes file.

          >> Marti also said…
          >>
          >> Joe Hernandez, Captain of the Groom Creek Fire Department,
          >> assigned to be HEQB(T), did not make it to the fire, according
          >> to his Facebook page, because he couldn’t “get covered,”
          >> i.e. I think he couldn’t get someone to back him up on his home turf.

          I agree that’s probably what Joe Hernandez meant by ‘covered’… and is the reason why he couldn’t make it there on Sunday.

          What’s still odd is that there is no corresponding ‘cancel’ notice for his order for any reason ( as we see with some others when they learn they can’t fulfill the order ). I also see no corresponding re-order to try and replace him.

          I think that means he just ‘blew it off’ and just didn’t bother to show up OR tell anyone he wasn’t coming.

          Probably ANOTHER interview that never happened… but SHOULD have.

    • FIRE20+ says

      WTKTT you believe the first dozer on scene on 6/30 was not a Yavapai County resource? I disagree thoroughly. I base this on looking at Shumate requesting a local dozer, on Denny (the Yavapai County Emergency Coord.) telling dispatch the first dozer on scene was…….and the second dozer on scene was……, the dozer Ball refers working with is a T1 dozer (May’s is a T2). Also the dozer Ball speaks of, didn’t have an angled blade which could also mean this dozer wasn’t used to fighting fire. And besides all that, look at the resource orders. E-39 and E-46 are for the dozer and the transport. How is a heavy equipment resource going to be tying in with Cordes at 0845 on 6/30 when he wasn’t ordered until 1208? I recognize resources moved without resource orders on YHF, but not heavy equipment or contractors. The heavy equipment most likely to move without a resource order on the YHF would be LOCAL and county associated. There were two county dozers assigned to the fire based on the 209’s and Denny’s reference to sending two Yavapai County dozers, but only one resource order assigned.

      • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

        Copy that. Consider my comment that “when the dozer arrived from May Machinery” to be a brain fart.

        I checked my own notes again on this and you are RIGHT.

        There is NO actual (public) evidence that the FIRST dozer that arrived in Yarnell that morning came from May Machinery ( at least I don’t think there is ).

        There is ONLY some definite proof that the SECOND dozer that arrived later that afternoon came from ‘May Machinery’.

        So the mystery surrounding this critical ‘first dozer’ ( and its operator ) actually deepens.

        It would appear that we really don’t even have any frickin’ idea WHERE this dozer actually came from… much less exactly WHO came with it.

        It is still astounding to me that as important as that DOZER was to EVERYTHING that was happening that day on that south side of the fire… and how it was influencing the ‘narrative’ itself… that TWO sets of investigators would have NOT had this all figured out even BEFORE they started to interview anyone.

  34. WantsToKnowTheTruth says

    **
    ** PROOF THAT SPGS1 GARY CORDES WAS USING
    ** HIS CELLPHONE ON JUNE 30, 2013

    This was brought up from a thread down below.

    >> On December 5, 2014 at 10:09 am, WTKTT said…
    >>
    >> ( SNIP )
    >>
    >> Cordes hadn’t heard from Frisby yet about Blue Ridge already going into
    >> ‘evacuation mode’ out there on the Cutover Trail… so Cordes might have
    >> still been thinking… “I still need Blue Ridge out there finishing that Cutover
    >> Trail… but I’m gonna need more Hotshots to improve the Dozer line that
    >> Ball is scouting and gonna cut for me down there to protect Glen Ilah”.
    >>
    >> Maybe that’s when Cordes himself made contact with Eric Marsh and
    >> said… “Paul didn’t know what the plan was here. Blue Ridge is already
    >> doing something important. We could REALLY use you guys for the other
    >> project which is gonna try to hook up with the Boulder Springs Ranch
    >> area. Can you get there?”
    >>
    >> We KNOW that Eric Marsh’s cellphone survived the fire.
    >>
    >> Amanda Marsh has said (publicly) that she has it now.
    >> It never seemed to have entered the official ‘chain of evidence’.
    >> Having it examined for evidence was ALWAYS what should have
    >> happened… but something tells me there’s little chance of that
    >> now. His cellphone records COULD still be obtained without his
    >> widow’s permission, however, since Marsh was being PAID a
    >> stipend for the cellphone by his employer, the City of Prescott.
    >>
    >> But… it’s also amazing to me that no set of investigators ever
    >> requested Gary Cordes’ cellphone records.

    Just for the ‘record’…

    Gary Cordes himself testified ( to ADOSH ) that he DID, in fact, have a cellphone with him on Sunday, June 30, 2013… and that he was USING it…

    From page 32 of SPGS1 Gary Cordes’ ADOSH interview on 9/11/13…

    ADOSH investigators were asking Cordes about the ‘Weather Alert(s)’. and if he ‘heard them’.

    Q2 = Dave Larsen ( WFA / ADOSH contractor ) ( Rest in Peace )
    A = SPGS1 Gary Cordes
    ———————————————————————————
    1391 Q2: Who, (unintelligible) who uh, who, who made the announcement?
    1392
    1393 A: Um, you know, I’m not sure who had made the original announcement, but I
    1394 do know that, that ops had checked, had called around to make sure we all
    1395 had, had heard it. I’m not sure if it was an FBAN or who, who had actually
    1396 made the, the um, um, the announcement over the radio, but we did hear. And
    1397 I was thinking that was towards um, that was somewhere around two
    1398 o’clockish, somewhere in that timeframe. Um, because I, I do remember
    1399 talking to uh, Todd Able on the uh, Ops Able on the uh, cell phone and, and
    1400 he asked me again if I had heard that. So I’m guessing it was somewhere in
    1401 that timeframe.
    —————————————————————————————

    Key sentence…

    “I do remember talking to uh, Todd Able on the uh, Ops Able on the uh, cell phone…”

    This is the ONLY place in either Gary Cordes’ Unit Log or any of his interviews where he actually admits he DID have cellphone with him in Yarnell… and that he WAS using to talk to others that day. There is NO evidence ( at this time ) that he ever called Eric Marsh with it… but we now know that was certainly possible.

    • Marti Reed says

      When I was going back over, and over and over again, Cordes’ interview etc., looking for SOME “hook” into the possibility of him asking Eric/Granite Mountain to come down to town, during that 3:30-ish to 4:10-ish framework, I could find absolutely nothing except how he couldn’t communicated directly with Eric, and had to, instead, relay his communications w/Eric via Frisby.

      OK to save myself brain agony and to spare confusion I’ll just pop that interview conversation in here:

      “I was trying
      1306 to get a hold of Eric and this is about the time, right about this time, in this
      1307 1445 to 50 timeframe is when I was having a radio problem with my King
      1308 radio. My transmissions weren’t getting out. I had a problem with my, uh, the
      1309 switch to my mike went out and uh, so I had to switch over to a Motorola, it
      1310 was a mobile unit mounted in my truck. Um, I lost, because of that, the group
      1311 programming that I had I lost air to ground. I had all the other Tacs and the
      1312 command channel and I just lost the air to ground frequency. Um, but during
      1313 that timeframe when I was having radio problems, I was trying to get a hold of
      1314 alpha and ask them, because I had heard that, that the fire had crossed the
      1315 dozer line by the grade, by, well by the – it had crossed the dozer line so I
      1316 then, I couldn’t get through to Eric direct so I got through to, to Blue Ridge,
      1317 asked where, and I heard that uh, Eric announced that it had crossed by the
      1318 grater. So that was that area that hadn’t been improved uh, is where it popped
      1319 through.
      1320
      1321 Q2: So that message came from Eric?
      1322
      1323 A: That came from Eric, I believe, um, or I heard it direct from Eric and, and then
      1324 Blue Ridge may have relayed it back to me but I did, I remember hearing it
      1325 from, from Eric.”

      “1450 Q1: …you said you were having some radio trouble and, and at some point you
      1451 lost your air to ground, prior, prior to losing your air to ground, were you able
      1452 to hear air Tac and, and uh, if so, what were you hearing from air Tac?
      1453
      1454 A: Yeah, what I had actually heard, and that’s what I was touching on a little bit
      1455 earlier, but I didn’t wanna get too, too far into it, ‘cause I’m not sure of the
      1456 timeframe and what had actually occurred, but I did hear Eric say that he was,
      1457 he was headed to his pre-designated safety zone. And, and so my assumption
      1458 was that he was headed to the um, to the Boulder Springs Ranch.
      1459
      1460 Q1: So that was your assumption is that he was going to the Boulder Springs
      1461 Ranch and not the black, is that right?
      1462
      1463 A: Yeah, exactly.
      1464
      1465 Q1: Um, okay.
      1466
      1467 A: And I was…
      1468
      1469 Q1: But you don’t know what that time frame might’ve been or…
      1470
      1471 A: No, that’s what I was trying, that’s what I was trying to fi – you know, jumble
      1472 that in to what I had here and I’m not really sure, um, when that actually
      1473 happened and how that correlated with him letting me know that it had
      1474 crossed the dozer line, uh, by the grater. So I’m not sure which came first.
      1475
      1476 Q1: Okay, so then somewhere in there he, and he actually called you rather than
      1477 somebody else…
      1478
      1479 A. No, he did not call me, he, he made the announcement to air attack on air to
      1480 ground.
      1481
      1482 Q1: Oh.
      1483
      1484 A: That, that he was going to the pre-designated safety zone.
      1485
      1486 Q1: And, and he told air attack that it had crossed the dozer line as well?
      1487
      1488 A: He, uh that, that transmission, I believe, came, I was trying to get that
      1489 information and, and I believe I heard it direct from Eric. I was unable to hook
      1490 up with him and I was, and I was communicating through Blue Ridge trying
      1491 to get that information from Blue Ridge and then I heard it, when he was
      1492 answering Blue Ridge, I heard it direct from…
      1493
      1494 Q1: (Unintelligible)
      1495
      1496 A: …from Eric. Right. That it has crossed by the grater.
      1497
      1498 Q1: Uh, he tells air attack that he’s going to his designated, pre-designated safety
      1499 zone…
      1500
      1501 A: Right.”

      “Q1: And so your assumption is…
      1508
      1509 A: He had plenty of time to get there and, and he was headed to the Boulder
      1510 Springs Ranch.
      1511
      1512 Q1: Okay.
      1513
      1514 Q2: Did he say that on air attack, air to ground, the air attack…
      1515
      1516 A: I’m sorry, air to ground, he said it to air attack, yes.”

      Nothing in this sounds, to me, as if he was even thinking about “The Cordes Plan” at this point.

      This conversation actually started out with his describing him ordering the crews in his area to start getting ready to get out at around 3:50. There was a question/conversation about whether Eric heard that. And he wasn’t sure. Which goes into the conversation I just pasted above.

      This is all in the context of the conversation he was having with Musser:

      “Q2: Okay. Uh, did you um, I wanted to go back to 1545, Ops Messer and you
      1357 discussed options. Uh, what were the options?
      1358
      1359 A: Basically we just discussed where we thought this was going and how, how
      1360 we needed to play it and I told him I didn’t have the resources, we were gonna
      1361 need to start you know, pulsing some resources over to us to support this.
      1362 Um, also I was gonna need some, obviously need some uh, air support to start,
      1363 start working that. Uh, we knew once it hit that ridge line that we’re gonna be
      1364 in trouble, ‘cause there was a lot of homes that were speckled all around in
      1365 that, in that area. So it was basically, you know, uh, assist with the evacuation
      1366 uh, try to get this thing painted up a little bit with some air, air support and uh,
      1367 start pulsing us some, some resources down.”

      ALL of this happens AFTER Musser asked Eric/Granite Mountain if they were committed to the ridge and they said yes. I agree with WTKTT that Musser made that call from his truck as he was driving over to meet Cordes, not after he got there.

      And, yeah, he doesn’t say anything about using his cellphone in all that. Although it would make sense, if he REALLY wanted to talk directly with Eric during that time when he was having such trouble communicating with him via the radio.

      I just really don’t think he had all that much of a “Plan” for putting that dozer line in from Glen Ilah to Boulder Springs Ranch in his mind at that point.

      I’m beginning to think he started thinking about that AFTER he heard that Eric/Granite Mountain were headed to their “Predetermined Safety Zone.” Which HE interpreted as Boulder Springs Ranch, but Blue Ridge didn’t. Once he added that “frame” to his “situational awareness,” THEN he started thinking, “Hmmmmmmm what if………??”

      • Marti Reed says

        Although, THIS…..

        1359 A: Basically we just discussed where we thought this was going and how, how
        1360 we needed to play it and I told him I didn’t have the resources, we were gonna
        1361 need to start you know, pulsing some resources over to us to support this.
        1362 Um, also I was gonna need some, obviously need some uh, air support to start,
        1363 start working that” …

        MIGHT have included a quick draft “scratching out” of some kind of idea that clearing something around the top of Glen Ilah off that road toward the southwest might help. But I don’t think it was a PLAN yet. But it might have been formulating in his mind before he heard Eric/Granite Mountain were headed toward their “pre-determined safety zone,” and then he REALLY started thinking about it.

        • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

          >> Marti said…
          >>
          >> I don’t think it was a PLAN yet.
          >>
          >> But it might have been formulating in his mind before he heard
          >> Eric/Granite Mountain were headed toward their “pre-determined
          >> safety zone,” and then he REALLY started thinking about it.

          Agree.

          However… it most DEFINITELY was a fully formulated PLAN ( and not just a mental musing ) by the time he actually TOLD Cory Ball to start ‘scouting it out’ down there at the west end of Glen Ilah.

          Problem is… we still don’t know exactly WHEN that happened.

          Cory Ball’s own Unit Log isn’t much help there. His entry about being TOLD by Cordes to start this ‘scouting operation’ comes shortly after Ball’s own 1600 ( 4:00 PM ) notation in his logs… but even that entry he makes at that time about ‘BRIHC disengaging to Safety Zone’ seems a bit off…. unless what he really meant there was simply BRIHC ‘disengaging’ from the Cutover Trail and heading back to the Youth Camp ( and not fully evac to RHR yet ).

          There also really aren’t any REDACTED parts of Ball’s Log right at that point that would put the order from Cordes to ‘start scouting’ into any better of a timeframe.

          For the sake of completeness… here ( again ) is that entire section from Cory Ball’s Unit Log covering this time when Cordes gave him the ORDER to start his ‘scouting mission’…

          EMPHASIS is MINE…

          ——————————————————————————
          1600: BRIHC disengaging to safety zone ( Ranch House Restaurant )

          BRIHC one ( Brian Frisby ) informs Structure Group One ( Gary Cordes )
          they are pushing engines everyone out of subdivision.

          (XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX – Entire next line REDACTED )

          Structure group one assigns me and ONE OTHER to locate possibility
          of DOZER LINE to southwest of Yarnell.

          Acquire ATV: travel into ( Glen Ilah ) subdivision back to DOZER LINE.
          Multiple structures fully engulfed and multiple spot fires in ( Glen Ilah ) subdivision.

          Notify structure group one ( Gary Cordes ) about fire and structures on
          corner of manzanita and lockwood. ( XXXXXXX – Rest of line REDACTED )
          (XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX – Entire next line REDACTED )

          Started evacuations of ( Glen Ilah ) subdivision.

          Helitanker drops water near manzanita junction.

          Inquiry about helitanker availablity.
          Told there are other priorities ( XXXXXXXXX – Rest of line REDACTED ).
          ( XXXXXXX – Next line REDACTED ).

          Evacuations for the next couple of hours.
          ———————————————————————————-

          There is, in fact, an entire line of his Log that is fully REDACTED just prior to his entry about the order from Cordes to start ‘scouting’… but I actually doubt that line has any more references to the ‘scouting mission’ ( or TIMES ) in it.

          That REDACTED line would seem to be more information about the line ABOVE it about ‘pushing engines out of subdivision’.

          That REDACTED line is, however, ‘all by itself’ with a blank line of separation in the log above and below it… so it really could have been about anything.

          Cordes was still a little confused about times… but he seemed to say he became FULLY aware ( and FULLY understood ) that Marsh would be “heading to his pre-deterimed Safety Zone” ( Boulder Springs Ranch ) just shortly after Eric Marsh was informing fire command that the fireline had blown through “the dozer line”. That would have been shortly after Brendan left his lookout mound and just after the MacKenzie videos.

          OR… was Cordes also mis-reporting this and what he really meant was that he was sure Marsh would be heading to the BSR after that radio report from Marsh about the fire blowing through the RETARDANT line… and not the DOZER line?

          That would put Cordes’ awareness that Marsh would be heading to the BSR upt to 15 or 20 minutes earlier than when the fire reached the DOZER line itself.

          Bottom line is that, at some point here, doing something to try and make the fire ‘skirt around’ Glen Ilah DID become a bona-fide PLAN… and he was ‘executing’ on that plan and having Ball ‘scout it out’. Whether this came out of his conversations with Musser… or Cordes came up with this PLAN on his own… we still don’t know.

          NEITHER Musser NOR Cordes say ANYTHING in ANY of their interviews about this PLAN or even anything about any ‘thoughts’ of protecting Glen Ilah. I still think that is VERY odd.

        • The Truth Will Always Remain Elusive says

          My interpretation of:

          “we discussed how we needed to play it”, is >’we discussed a plan’. This interpretation is further supported by, “I told him I didn’t have the resources” (for the plan).

          “pulsing some resources over to us to support this.”,> indicates the need to bump resources for this (this=the plan).

          “Um, also I was gonna need some, obviously need some uh, air support to start,
          1363 start working that” (that=the plan).

          Bottom line: “how we needed to play it” indicated they had come up with a specific plan, because the statements that followed, which I noted above, all revolved around the pulses and minuses of putting that plan into action

          • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

            Copy that.

            The ‘new videos’ that were recently released really HAVE caused us to go back and look at ALL of this again ( as new evidence will do ).

            Based on what you are pointing out above… it really IS possible that even the mysterious ( and still actually unverified ) radio call from Eric Marsh to ‘Bravo 33’ about… “That’s it… that’s where we want the retardant” *might* have had something to do with all this.

            >> FIRE20++ wrote…
            >>
            >> “Um, also I was gonna need some, obviously need
            >> some uh, air support to start, start working that” (that=the plan).

            So if ‘the plan’ now also INCLUDED that ‘scouting mission’ Cordes had already given to Cory Ball.. .then Cordes’ thinking about ‘Air Support’ might have also been directly related to that possible ’emergency dozer push’ that he thought might be coming together down there from the south end of the Sesame area ( where the dozer loboy was ) on over towards the Boulder Springs Ranch cattle pond… and then (perhaps) connecting with the rock outcrops of the Boulder Springs Ranch itself.

            So if that WAS the plan… and Eric Marsh himself was aware that WAS the plan… Marsh’s (suppposed) statement about “That’s it…. that’s where we need the retardant” might be even more directly related to this “emergency dozer push near the BSR” than even previously thought.

            It really is more important now than it has ever been to see Marsh’s, Musser’s and Cordes’ cell phone records.

            This ENTIRE ‘plan’ for some kind of ’emergency dozer push’ there near the Boulder Springs Ranch ( and GM’s participation in that ) might have been totally formulated and discussed via just face-to-face conversations between Musser and Cordes and then cellphone communications with Eric Marsh and/or the other ‘participants’.

            • Bob Powers says

              The Basic problem with a line constructed north of Glen Isla was simple as I stated a couple of days ago.

              In order to be effective it needed to be a minimum 30 Feet wide
              a hand crew would take with a cat at least 6 to 8 hours and you would need rancor points on both ends to keep the fire from running around the line possibly Hwy 89.

              As Marti has said the team was chasing the fire and left in the dust
              or they were really 12 plus hours behind the actual burning and spared.

              Even if the would have attempted to build this supposed line starting at 1300 they would have never tied in the ends or completed it by 1700 there was just not enough time based on the fuel and line construction rates.

              This so called plan was so far behind the power curve that it is laughable. If this was a plan then the IC should never have been certified or running a fire.

              He was not even in a position to look at the area he was proposing to build this line if he had been he would have abandoned it immediately . It was just plain way to late.

              • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                Reply to Bob Powers post on
                December 6, 2014 at 5:01 pm

                >> Bob Powers said…
                >>
                >> This so called plan was so far behind the
                >> power curve that it is laughable. If this was
                >> a plan then the IC should never have been
                >> certified or running a fire.

                There WAS no ‘IC running the fire’.

                There really wasn’t.

                Roy Hall was CLUELESS and NOT ENGAGED in what was happening all day long. The only evidence we have in ALL of this evidence that has been made available as to what IC Roy Hall was doing all day was just thinking about TOMORROW.

                He was totally absorbed in ‘kicking the fire up to another Incident Level’ and making all the phone calls and shit to do THAT rather than actually making sure the fire that was burning THAT DAY was actually being taken care of.

                It would appear that the only time Roy Hall ever even came out of the principal’s office at the Model Creek School and/or even looked out the window at the fire he was hired to fight is when it almost burned his own ass out of his own ICP.

                Now look at SPGS1 Gary Cordes’ situation.

                Not only was he SPGS1 on a fire that basically had a non-existent IC ( or any action plan )… Cordes also had NO DIVISION SUPERVISOR in his area.

                The one who was SUPPOSED to be there helping him ( Rance Marquez ) had just ‘disappeared’ around NOON and nobody knew where he was.

                And to top it all off… a guy who is now SPGS1 ( and had already been up all night and might have been sleepless for up to 30 ( THIRTY ) hours by late afternoon Sunday ) told the ADOSH investigators he in now way even considered HIMSELF to be a ‘Structure Protection Specialist’.

                So THIS is now the guy who is supposed to suddenly be some kind of WFF ‘expert’ as well… and be deciding where dozer lines should be and what Hotshot crews ( both FEDERALLY sanctioned and one fully FEDERALLY owned ) should be doing and WHERE they should be doing it?

                Give me a break.

                All the reasons for NOT even trying to build some dozer line that you give up above are VALID… based on YOUR experience and YOUR knowledge…

                …but there really is no evidence this Gary Cordes guy had anything even remotely NEAR that kind of KNOWLEDGE or EXPERIENCE to be making those kinds of decisions.

                Yet… there he was… tired, sleepless, overworked, under-qualified… and making critical decisions with no direct supervision from either a qualified DIVS or even an IC.

                All he got near the time things were already hitting the fan was some guy who had just been ‘Planning OPS’ most of the day and who had only just recently jumped into the fire and wasn’t even up to speed on where any of the resources were.

                He was not even in a position to look at the area he was proposing to build this line if he had been he would have abandoned it immediately . It was just plain way to late.

                • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

                  Typo above… I forgot to ‘bracket’ the last paragraph which was actually one of Mr. Powers’ comments.

                  Last paragraph above should have looked like this…

                  >> Bob Powers also said…
                  >>
                  >> He was not even in a position to look at
                  >> the area he was proposing to build this
                  >> line if he had been he would have
                  >> abandoned it immediately It was
                  >> just plain way to late.

                  He was way over his head by then… and desperate.

                  At the very beginning of Gary Cordes’ ADOSH interview is where he told the investigators he didn’t even consider HIMSELF to be a ‘Structure Protection Specialist’.

                  The only things Gary Cordes told ADOSH he had on his ‘red card’ was Strike Team Engine Task Force Leader, Occasional DIVS, B-Sawyer, Engine Boss, Paramedic.

                  That’s it.

                  Page 1 of Gary Cordes’ ADOSH interview…
                  ————————————————–
                  Q=Bruce Hanna
                  Q1=Barry Hicks
                  Q2=Dave Larsen ( Rest in Peace )
                  Q3=Brett Steurer
                  A=Gary Cordes
                  ————————————————–
                  Q: Okay. So Chief Cordes, how long have you worked for the Central Yavapai Fire District?

                  A: I’m in my 24th year uh, which I will hit my 24th anniversary November 13th23 …
                  Q: Okay.
                  A: …of this year.
                  Q: And the current position is?
                  A: I’m a Battalion Chief…
                  Q: Battalion Chief.
                  A: …and I’m our, our training Chief.
                  Q: Okay.
                  A: That’s my current position.

                  Q: Okay. And what kind of uh, can you give us a little synopsis of your history, or you career in firefighting and any special training or certifications that you hold?

                  A: Um, I’ve been in the fire service a total of 29 years. Um, I’m, I’m a paramedic um, I worked my way up through the ranks. Um, a myriad, I hold over 55 different certificates for training. Um, uh primarily uh, as far as related to the wildland aspect it’s only been 24 years of my career that I’ve been involved in that, ever since coming to Central Yavapai, ‘cause we are in the urban interface and, and I’ve worked my way up to the level of division sup, um, over the years.

                  Q: Okay. And you have a lot of different red card, red card certifications?

                  A: I have a few red card certifications, yeah.

                  Q: Okay. Uh, Barry, do you need to know any of that or (Dave)?
                  Q1: Uh yeah, that’d help if we could hear it.

                  A: Um, I’m uh, Strike Team Engine Task Force leader and Divs… and I have uh, B-Sawyer as well. It’s been awhile since I’ve looked at it. Engine boss, and paramedic.

                  Q2: Hey Gary, I was just wondering you – I’m gonna presume that you have a structure uh, group specialist or however you got that on your red track?

                  A: No, I’m not a structure group specialist. However, most of the division work I do is as a structured group, um, doing structure protection. But I’m NOT a specialist.
                  ————————————————–

                  • Bob Powers@magiclink.com says

                    Basically an Engine person—-Strike Team Leader
                    Maybe only a DIVS. Trainee with his experience
                    Not a wild land Fire complete background.
                    from all that way out of his comfort level.
                    Those are the kind of overhead that HS Superintendents tend to work around or ignore when thins go to hell.
                    He may have had the ability to give Marsh a praise on a good job so Marsh tried to please???
                    Just my observation but plausible?????

  35. Sonny says

    Bob Powers: Thanks for your reply and I immediately did send an E mail to the EPA. It was a long one and included photos of the huge drop that lies parallel to Yarnell. Those people are good at their work and can find out if the excessive deaths might be related to the fire retardant or other factors. I suspect they would want to know the environmental impact as well. We likely have cyanide in the area so maybe they will look into that as well.

    We will keep you posted.

  36. Sonny says

    I had some thoughts last night considering the magnitude of this Yarnell Fire. This morning after contemplating Wants to Know the Truth’s last post, I sense how well all of you that have been on top of this have proven that there is plenty reason for exposing all possible evidence and leads to the events that lead up to the deaths of 19 young men and the aftermath of the Yarnell Hill fire that has affected the lives of so many here in this small peaceful community. Thirty five deaths and more we haven’t yet learned of since the fire certainly can be at least partially attributed to the fire, and in some cases, I believe fully attributed to the fire. Attempted suicide, possible full suicice, and many folks having to leave their homes and many disgusted and leaving the area completely, not to mention local division of residents, some angered because of the inequality of the distribution of funds to people wanting to stay and rebuild. The dynamics of this thing keeps people here on edge and I suspect will for years to come.

    There are some questions I want to ask of our learned people–attorneys watching this site and federal officers most likely will have answers that I am certain more than just myself want to know. I don’t know about you, but if you want to get my attention show me an FBI badge, or a Marshalls badge and I will want to hear your say. I do know the people on this site are doing a great job of analyzing the limited information they have. Would it not be great if some of our federal agent friends could be assigned to gather additional information that is there but yet to be revealed publicly?

    Joy and I have both been chastised for doing our best to get this information and get it to the people such as are on this site and have those wonderful analytical skills that collectively have been slowly eating away the white wash to expose the actual sequence of disaster as it unfolded. Now I propose these questions:

    1) What are the necessary requirements for an FBI investigation into the deaths of these men?.

    2) What are the requirements to interest the Environmental Protection Agency to investigate the area for toxins, possible contamination by the retardants, and possible cyanide dumps and other chemical dumps in the area that would have been dispersed due to the fire?

    3) Would the fact that more than 35 deaths of the locals in less than a thousand residents factor into such an investigation–all these since the short time since June 30, 2013?

    4)Do any of you knowledgeable or learned persons feel this is a prudent action to get outside investigators involved?

    5) What could evidence would we need to present to federal agencies to get their attention?

    6) Often I do not know even the questions to ask. What questions should I add to the above?

    Joy and I have received some harassment from various local authorities and it is told us because they are receiving flack from certain people on our involvement and helps we are doing to get at the facts of the fire. We are warned to not go into that area, yet legally we have every right to go where we go –Joy is a stickler to rules and order–me I go along but in such a wild area I do not see the point of why we should not hike concerned people, loved ones, fire fighters, and others who want to know what happened and why. We won’t quit as long as we are legal, no will we stop getting evidence such as photos where we can legally do so. We do realize that not everyone appreciates our diligence–and sometimes I wonder why. Sticking our heads in the sand will not do in this situation–so we will continue as best we can.

    • Bob Powers says

      Sonny
      First I would get info on the Retardant Chemical’s you are concerned about.

      Second contact the local EPA and see if they have any knowledge that they could investigate
      I have used them here and they were very receptive to checking out a problem.
      I Had diesel in the canal that my horses water out of they found the source and took action.

      third I would talk to the County Commissioners and see if there is a concern over the number of deaths in the area.
      Or even the local city councils/Mayors.

      • Sonny says

        Bob Powers, you have been interviewed with John Dougherty and as we have– John ought to personally interview Elizabeth and Calvin–that would clear up the issue of and confusion concerning whether they are the same or different people. It would also bring to front where the expertise in their respective fields can help to uncover this dark veil covering the truth of what went down to kill 19 young men that day.

        • Bob Powers says

          I do believe he is discouraged with Elizabeth and no longer discussing any thing with her.
          On the topic of people on here John has left that alone and not commented on who is who or how many aliases they have. As he has said nothing about the charges of aliases for RTS which I know are false.
          Elizabeth/Calvin have an agenda that tends to make false statements to achieve some goal at times the questions are good but the attacks are a worthless endeavor to attack peoples reputations. to negate there information.
          I’ll leave it there………….

  37. Elizabeth says

    Marti Reed says DECEMBER 5, 2014 AT 6:56 AM
    “Elizabeth is gonna love this. Remember when, a gazillion months ago we spent days arguing with her because she was so sure Musser was checking on GM’s availability “for Gary Cordes” and we were so sure that most likely wasn’t the case?”

    Why, Marti, are you finally admitting that I was right and that you are sorry that folks on this board keep attacking me, making horrible (and untrue) statements about me, etc.? 😉 🙂 🙂 (I am teasing you in good fun, of course, Marti.)

    I continue to have or have access to all sorts of YHF-related information that folks on this board seem not to have access to, and I try to share that information when I can with folks on my e-mail list (if you want to be on it, just e-mail me at elizabethreyarnell@gmail.com), but sometimes I forget what I sent to whom. At the start of this whole process, I tried to share some of my information with John Dougherty or Bill Gabbert, so that they could then share it publicly with all of you as they saw fit, but over the past several months, John Dougherty seems to have been out of pocket (and maybe out of the country), so I have not always gotten responses to my e-mails to him, so I largely stopped reaching out regularly to share intel with him.

    For example, with the Aaron Hulburd and other videos that the Arizona Forestry folks only recently posted on the internet, some of us either HAD those videos, had versions of them, or had access to them for months before it appears that JD finally did. We just weren’t in a position to share, or we weren’t comfortable sharing, or we TRIED to share and did not hear back. So, in short, when I state something as fact or I state that I am pretty certain of something, unless I specify otherwise, you can generally be pretty sure that I have the raw material (e.g. something more reliable than just statements in the SAIT or some such) to back up what I am saying.

    Anyway, thanks for your acknowledgment, Marti. I might not know a lot about wildland firefighting tactics, I might not know a lot about professional photography, and I might not know a lot about BV, the Illuminati, and Dry Slots, but I know a lot about getting and compiling detailed, accurate information and conducting solid investigations under dicey conditions. Different people have different skill sets. 🙂

    And I am glad to hear, Marti, that your daughter’s Friendsgiving went well! Did you host it at your home? If so, that had to be lots of fun, and I envy you.

    • Bob Powers says

      Elizabeth—REALLY?????

      You Had The Videos, had versions of them or had access to them.??????

      You are really impressed with your self aren’t you???

      In November you told every one after my post there were no 43 min. of videos that were going to be released gust before they were and made you the fool now you had them all the time

      Sorry can’t buy that

      Especially since all your attack on RTS just went backwards on you by using a name that gave you testimony that you fabricated to slander RTS. And Calvin followed up on it
      I thank Ken straightened that out over on your BLOG. Ken Jordan never gave you any information but you printed his name as if he confirmed your attack on RTS.
      And then you used unconfirmed sources to justify the Total Fabrications.

      Elizabeth You had no idea of the 21 videos that were released or there content.
      Just more fabrication for your EGO.

      And I do not intend to apologize for the Above.

      • Joy A. Collura says

        by phone EN did state she had them to me, Bob Powers in the past month or so and I remember being by a pine tree and can probably look at phone records to the date and time.

        I think this did happen to MacLean and Neill in the start of the year when their article came out that EN made claim she had source first and there was some discussion on that so what if she did material first before anyone…the concern is how she selectively shares the information versus doing the hard work and purity we see from Marti Reed who takes any of the hikers information may we believe accounts coming in or not and she takes the love, time and energy to organize it a.s.a.p. for the PUBLIC to view all information in dropboxes. As for JD, he is a very busy man yet any STRONG leads he has received I have seen him do an immediate follow up and I am very proud of his continued efforts. To lay claim you had it before than simply take a photo of envelope with date stamped and place a drop box way for the public to see and let the public figure it out because we know when JD got his-
        simple. No big deal either way. Information IS information no matter who is first out…

        • Elizabeth says

          Joy, thank you for remembering, and thank you for your kind words!! 🙂 🙂 I have bent over backward to share whatever I get. When John Maclean and Holly Neill posted their essay, they linked to the videos that I had spent HOURS posting. I have never asked for thanks from John or Holly or anyone. I did it because it was the right thing to do. So THANK YOU, Joy, for remembering how I had always, always devoted hours upon hours and a bunch of money to share whatever I could, and thank you for your kudos. I have worked so hard, and I am grateful for you remembering, Joy. Thank you! Take care.

          • Bob Powers says

            It dose not have any thing to do with who had what first it has to do with making clams about having things that she never ever had.
            Like e 21 videos.
            that were under raps with the FS Feds. and not released to any one until the requests were filed by the State and others JD included.

            • Bob Powers says

              The Videos were released on the 7th of November.
              Elizabeth had nothing before then.

              If after what Calvin and Elizabeth Joked about Tex and drinking to much Whisky ———I am surprised you are still happy with either
              of them. But that’s your choice……..

              • calvin says

                Bob

                We all know it has been a bad week for you here at IM But stating things that are untrue, surely wont help you.

                No one said one word about whiskey, until you just said it. Stop sensationalizing everything and trying to stir up shit.

                LOL

                • Bob Powers says

                  OK my misstatement
                  SO YOU SAID

                  Ok Tex
                  I understand You had to much to drink and you were Plastered.
                  And Elizabeth thought it was funny

                  GO TO HELL CALVIN/ELIZABETH

                  • calvin says

                    bob

                    That is not very nice. You need to keep your tantrums in check.

                    Also. Is that your true colors?
                    To speak to someone you do not know the way you speak to me, and damn my soul to eternal hellfire?

                    Wow, atta boy!

                    • calvin says

                      Bob continues to attack people here at IM. And he has the audacity to do it from some sort of self appointed moral high ground.

                      He has questioned my true colors, I guess meaning my character? And then turns around and tells me to go to hell.

                      How dare you bob? Who do you think you are?

                    • Bob Powers says

                      Calvin/Elizabeth

                      Lets just say I am a better Person than You.

                      Let me also say The only people I attack or ever have attacked on here is the one and only
                      Calvin/Elizabeth

                      You can find nothing in my back ground to question my integrity or my credential’s.

                      Your Games are not working I have the same information as RTS from other sources here in
                      R4 and they have told me the same thing Marsh was reckless Bad Decisions with Good out comes so trying to silence RTS will not change the facts.

                      Bad Safety Practices create Bad safety decisions. Gloves Sleeves rolled up taking a sick crewman to a fire assigning him as a lookout. McDonough’s own statements about
                      The 10 standard orders.

                      Or the total disregard for LCES a move down hill into a death trap. Moving out of the best safety Zone on the fire for what reason?

                      Putting an entire Crew at risk for what reason?
                      No reasons in here have ever been good enough to Risk a crew’s movement in front of a wall of flame to get to some point for some reason except Marsh and his risk to achieve praise. Bad decisions with good out comes or Calculated risks to prove your the best.

                      King killed half his crew on the Loop fire doing the same thing 2 HS Superintends refused to do what he did and told him not to do it he did it to prove them wrong that was 1966.

                      Oh and by the way if you have not checked your friends blog which I know you have what you suggested about RTS was just proved totally wrong by some one quoted by Calvin/Elizabeth as his personal statement which he never said so spreading false rumors on here is no what I would call good character.

                      As far as wild land fire suppression goes you have no clue compared to RTS, Fire20+, TTWARE and myself you are less than a 10% knowledge factor so I will leave it there.

                      That’s who I know I am and my Morals seem to be a steep above yours
                      GTH Calvin/Elizabeth.

                      I had a great week last week by the way seeing the blog of yours given a total Lie check by some one you quoted that very nicely called you story a complete fabrication on the Clear creek fire and showing every one your true colors. Have a nice day

        • Joy A. Collura says

          On December 5, 2014 at 3:35 pm Joy A. Collura (me) said … That I can look up time stamp which I did and the phone call with EN was after videos were out but she did still state she had them. I wish I can write like others versus how I do but that was all I was saying and if she wanted to “prove” such than do what Marti Reed does and make a dropbox account and place a photo of the envelope the material was placed in and mailed to her and blur out her address and it shall show the date it was mailed to her so that would tell us the public if her material was received before or after John Dougherty and others. I did not understand why I got a text by EN or a post saying thank you because all I did was let Bob Powers know I did get a call that she had them and this is not the first event—it trails back to the last set of videos when MacLean/Neill did their article and to me I now have learned what FOIA is and is all about so it means anyone can get it so who cares who got theirs first or who downloaded theirs first because in the end just glad more information is out. Shit, if I ever get the final piece to nail this baby I am never going to want people to know I had it “first” but be glad it is finally OUT THERE!
          You did not have to thank me. I still am confused by the post myself because I reread what I wrote and I did not get the same message…Bob, you do not have to worry about the comment that the 2 made on Sonny. Just last night he tried to post here to you Bob and he was going to state “Salute to Bob Powers for his good discernment and I am enjoying a good Guiness right now.”
          I have known Sonny since I first read his ad 8-17-11 which you all can to on senior match dot com under sonnygilly or sonnyg and I am the desert walker and when Kat asked me to look at her profiles July 2011 it took me almost seven weeks to do and I only did out of boredom one late night at 2am awaiting my husband to get home from work and there was Sonny’s unusual ad. I thought people meet people in person. When I saw he was drawing folks who are looking for papers to be citizens we had our first corresponding on 8-23-11 and it was so nice to talk history, numinastics, politics, religion, guns, desert hikes, caves, rocks/geology, pets, etc….People close to me know I had no intention of meeting this man Sonny and when we went on a hiking adventure west of the Grand Canyon that would begin the start of NEW things to my life…Sonny is not a sot nor a bourbon hound yet there are times when he drinks he knows what it means to its fullest extent and we will ALWAYS clash until the day I pass on there. I do not drink. It is like a smoker and a non-smoker…they allow or tolerate yet in the end if you keep your body pure of those elements you can’t understand it. Yet I get the sweet world and salt world…or fat world…I get when I knock that crap out too I see life different. I do know what we put in our bodies may it be food substance, liquor substance or smoke or dope or pharmaceutical substance it does change your mental views on situations. I do not need a band wagon of thanks yous or recognition that Sonny was plastered but it was fact he stated that and when he was sober he was like why did I Joy do it and post it and yet in my position I avoid escalations and so it was simple as that if I had not he would of said why didn’t I. Bob Powers, anyone can view us the way they choose; freedom but like I said if someone wants to post on IM and it helps bring clarity and not harm to the board and to anyone than they should be allowed here but if they attack and say things then either take it as it is what it is—the source—and move on—but not feed into the rubbish. We very much support all your efforts Bob Powers and Sonny very much so because when he asks things here you are usually first to write him back. Bob, if you know more details to a situation we stand by your side—not 1/2 ass either—we stand by it all the way…anytime we have not met on a topic we discuss it and we agree to disagree end of story and to this date the only thing I have not agreed with is until further proof is shown I just cannot after talking to so many who knew Marsh and my original gut feeling that he would lead those men to their death—their is details and from day one I told EN MY ONLY CONCERN in this was Marsh’s cell records and a select few because IT WILL PROVE ALOT— I PROMISE THAT!

          by phone EN did state she had them to me, Bob Powers in the past month or so and I remember being by a pine tree and can probably look at phone records to the date and time.

          I think this did happen to MacLean and Neill in the start of the year when their article came out that EN made claim she had source first and there was some discussion on that so what if she did material first before anyone…the concern is how she selectively shares the information versus doing the hard work and purity we see from Marti Reed who takes any of the hikers information may we believe accounts coming in or not and she takes the love, time and energy to organize it a.s.a.p. for the PUBLIC to view all information in dropboxes. As for JD, he is a very busy man yet any STRONG leads he has received I have seen him do an immediate follow up and I am very proud of his continued efforts. To lay claim you had it before than simply take a photo of envelope with date stamped and place a drop box way for the public to see and let the public figure it out because we know when JD got his-
          simple. No big deal either way. Information IS information no matter who is first out…

          • Elizabeth says

            I agree, and, again, I thank you Joy! I appreciate your kind words. Everyone tries to “keep it pure”! I have reached out to JD to send him things or point things out to him, and he is a member of the media, but I am not. JD is busy.
            Thank you, again, Joy.

          • Elizabeth says

            Also to Joy: It was my pleasure to teach you how to make a FOIA or public records request. I am glad that it worked out for you and Sonny, and you are entirely welcome! Feel free to contact me again if you need help.

            • Bob Powers says

              I say be very aware of the BLACK WIDOW SPIDER and her niceties

              You are going on her word with out factual evidence as was asked by WTKTT

              It is up to you and Sonny to decide to carried on a conversation with
              Elizabeth she has already been proven to have fabricated several
              statements with no facts or fabricated information for her own gain

              You have your own choices to make .

              I only know what I have seen heard read and discussed with Elizabeth over the E-Mails this summer.
              I have formed my opinion.
              She Has Fabricated Facts to make her look GOOD.

            • Joy A. Collura says

              reply to Elizabeth says
              DECEMBER 6, 2014 AT 10:49 AM

              I am truly grateful for not only once but almost a year later you again walked me through it for the Flippen Family—the foia—thank you.

              I could not have known that important information without you EN.

              I really don’t understand EN at times like vice versa but in the end I do know no matter wherever her place is on the YHF she has not done me or Sonny any harm. I think by me mentioning her name at times to certain things I may of made her feel I did wrong and that was why you see periodically an apology made by me.

              Life is too short

              Right now with all the behind the scene bs this week I have not wanted to come online much with my tiny cell and type type type to have the screen go back back back after typing for 1/2 hour on tiny cell so you caught us here when at the library but finally it is Sunday and in my home on my pc and zoned out to here—to catch up and read.

              Some real great stuff on here.

              Offline this week we had the YCSO thing to than being followed from Chino Valley to Surprise and its odd…I would never do anything to deserve being arrested and if I ever was it was done under false ways and what can they gain by following us but waste gas and time…are you trying to find something to use against me…why waste your time whoever you are on us and do us all a favor and focus and look at things I brought up long ago. Do a family tree of the YHF. Place each person that fought on that fire and connect the dots of family relations and friend relations and how since day one I felt an outside investigation team was needed because Bob Powers I know you heard my stuff on the sun rises and sets stuff but now look at these nineteen men and how some of the men come into our thoughts and dreams to this very day and using that sun set and rise thing—look at it that— here —the men UP THERE spending their Eternity looking down see everything we see in circles of life spherical speaking from their position. Each person trying to reach clarity and some to create maze like confusion. The people trying to CREATE—God knows them—He laughs and thinks they need to change up their play—Sometimes our comments is a give in to inviting judgement and how we feel for the day may get or warrant a reaction.

              Just this week a man said to me with Sonny and Bob Kramer present I would like to see what’s under that (my blue upper clothing) and Sonny stayed quiet where normally he says “she’s a lady” or a support comment but then again later in week this man went to come to us in the Yarnell library grabbing on to me and later again that night doing the same knowing not to— so Sonny and I left and next thing I am doing defensible space yesterday (BECAUSE BOB POWERS IS SPOT ON THERE—IT BEGINS AT HOME AND DOING MY BEST TO EDUCATE AND DO THE WORK FOR THESE FOLKS FOR FREE) anyways Jeff drove by and said that man is going around with a notarized statement and went to the location for maybe witness’ to event and the fact is he can notarize all day how he is a gay man all he wants but being on the fire board and all the behind the scenes of local current and retired fire folks telling me Chief Ben Palm wants the hikers arrested and is eager to do that and when asked directly he would not answer yes or no and said if I want to believe others that my choice. Really? Plus the Dec 1st bs talk with Sgt. Ashby that got a day later apology on her own accord on the very same topic of arresting the hikers & that darn site. So am I comfortable gay or not in a person grabbing on me—nah. Not okay so since he did his little ploy & shit I like the fella—got no gripes for him—he works hard and lives his life but when you try to pull me in or Sonny on this horseshit ploy it indeed red flags there could be more to this. Get the hikers arrested in any fashion possible…is that right Chief Ben Palm and YCSO? I live a good legal life and you all can try and trap me in any shape or form but in the end God is watching and I know I am protected by Him.
              Most who know my complete life know I should not be here—no shit—yet I am. Early in my life I saw things nobody especially a child should have to see or be around — for that I WON’T avert my eyes—not again! Back than it was secret survival—today no more secrets. If I had not met Gail Edwards; she changed my life FOREVER. In a dark territorial world there IS light.

              • Joy A. Collura says

                some to create maze like confusion. The people trying to CREATE—God knows them—He laughs and thinks they need to change up their play–

                in reference to SAIT folks
                just in case someone was thinking someone on here—
                nope.
                I think of Mike Dudley how that video was done for current firefighters and wonder how many saw right through it…
                Mike, man. Really?
                Shaking head.
                To many areas to review in this YHF and it would be so sweet to be handed a nice piece of information that locals say they want to give us but life happens and maybe they forgot or maybe the Holidays but all I can do is be in the right place at right time and re ask—

              • Sonny says

                Joy forgot to mention i stepped between him and her, and needless to say he won’t bother again. Cowboys know how to square circles.

                • Joy A. Collura says

                  oh geez, Sonny. I really can handle my own life and to me yes he was not in the right or he did not have the consent yet he is just some man who goes to work and maybe has a drink or two. If he was a prop to ploy this concern than too sad but if it is just a man who speaks crude words as in humor than bottom line just keep it away from me and my ears yet I do not need any man or woman to stand between me and anyone…I understand you Sonny but others may not so they can misconstrue your words and ideas of things. We sure are at a cross roads because I feel you really show a lack of understanding to some areas. You this cowboy guy watching you I felt I was watching Harrelson in True Detective in your old school mannerisms which really is not needed either. Why is it such that if you don’t think like another or do things as one wants you to—they can say “f- off” or “I never liked you anyways” or “do what you want” with a sworded tone and pierced look or trash/damage your character when forgiveness is so much faster and better. Why is it I feel at such a strong cross road these days. I mean Sonny you get locked on something and hard to share with you so I hope in your lifetime that you are shared everything you expect out of it yet I know indeed I can never ever meet your expectations—just cannot happen—I am old fashion but you should of been born in the 1860-1880 era indeed. I am more of 1928-1948 era myself. I thank you for everything you taught me and are still…

          • Marti Reed says

            Joy~

            You wrote:

            “I wish I can write like others versus how I do”

            LOL! I actually love reading your posts. You’ve actually gotten BETTER!

            I have two degrees. I was a minister. I spent YEARS writing. Trying to make complicated stuff understandable by normal people. I wrote for Lowell Observatory for the public for two years. That was special!!

            In 2006 I decided to quite writing and get serious about photography instead. I was tired of trying to put stuff into lines with periods and commas that didn’t fit into that form. Although I did do bits and pieces of mini-blogging on Daily Kos for a number of years.

            I blogged Deepwater Horizon, the Libyan Revolution, Fukushima, and Occupy.

            This format here, where you can’t edit stuff, is one of the most difficult formats to write anything in. Even on Twitter, you can delete posts if you realize they don’t make sense or have a mistake in them.

            I started teaching my daughter how to write when she was about five, all the way through high school (where I realized they weren’t doing the job) and then all the way through graduate school. I knew she needed to know how to do it, even if her peers couldn’t.

            Your writing may be “different” but your mind is AWESOME!!!!!! You’re so SPOT ON with what you are thinking and saying.

            And I understand that at least half the time you’re posting via less than adequate computers, networks, mobiles, whatever, while I’m sitting here comfortably on an iMac with all my files and networks attached directly to it.

            Your idea for Elizabeth to post that photo is spot on. As was your idea to cut the confusion on those Olympus photos by taking a photo and compare it to the time she took the photo, did exactly that–cut the confusion.

            And I’m not all that “pure.” I have my ahem moments. And I sometimes post things I regret becuz it’s late at night and I’ve had my share of what I drink to put me to sleep over my neuropathy–rum.

            But I do have YEARS of experience in what we, in the justice community, call “witnessing.” Paying attention to “facts on the ground” and honoring them. In a number of really nasty contentious situations.

            Because of those YEARS, I’m very clear about what I’m doing and why, when I’m doing that. And also HOW. And that doesn’t mean I don’t make my share of mistakes.

            And that’s exactly what you’re doing. You may not have years of experience, but you’re definitely holding your own as you learn.

            I’m so glad you’re here.

            Have a great day!

            • Bob Powers says

              And on the light side correcting my spelling or trying to.
              My only degree is in the school of hard knocks and experience.

            • Joy A. Collura says

              reply to Marti Reed says
              DECEMBER 6, 2014 AT 11:38 AM

              LOL! I actually love reading your posts. You’ve actually gotten BETTER!
              my reply—-the thing is…I thought as I laid in evacuation first week of July 2013 and July 1st I laid in there on my birthday and Sonny is sharing to Don Alexander and others about how we took photos of this and that and I laid there thinking SHIT, why should I live in history, huh? Why to a tragedy? why always must I be..I don’t wanna know anything anymore…I lived the horror already in my childhood and teens—my husband knows and Gail Edwards and Sonny and very select few…I learned so early on THIS IS A WORLD WHERE NOTHING IS SOLVED! I laid in that thought and I thought if I share my name …my name may be out there and here locally locals tell me my own evacuation bed mates Neattie’s mom Annie had me investigated. You will not come back with a thing for me. I indeed saw crap early on you all see in real bad nightmares or horror movies but I don’t do wrong except let a decent body get fat and trying to rid of that problem with my trail trekking with Sonny and Skeeter. I am not afraid of a local looking into me yet I know what I saw as a kid that person who was doing life in prison for dismembering a woman…that kind of woman is the kind who was being released on one of those holey roller good behaviors and that is the kind of woman I do not need to be reunited with so YES in the start I never wanted to help…not an account or a photo just let my people I know in Congress and Yarnell see it private. Yet these 19 men may have perished but their souls are all on that Weavers and I feel their presence and if Sonny and I did not unite as one to share our account and photos and videos and gather others accounts and photos and videos so this can FINALLY get properly assessed vs the horseshit orchestrated by the SAIT/SAIR. I won’t avert my eyes— not again! I won’t want this to happen to anyone else EVER AGAIN and if we don’t stay the VOICE and I do not just mean Sonny and Joy—US ALL—this practice will again and again forever happen—TIME FOR A CHANGE IN THE WAY THEY FIGHT WILDFIRES! My true failure in life is knowing others—I can smooth as butter every ten days come out of my shell and be the light but than I go back in my shell. NOT SINCE THE FIRE! I have daily been out there and I see a change in me. Also along the way I made errors because I am not use to being around a person every day especially strangers. Thank you to these fine nineteen men. I will never understand Amanda Marsh and her body language and last email to me—never—yet I always felt her and I would of had a different first time…

              How much of the chain of command language fell into factor on the YHF? How many were just a pawn piece? What other factors will surface?
              So many state names and theories and what if and this could of happen but I am not a follower on that just time stamped accounts of any kind so we can weed through to the fact based to reach clarity. Simple.
              ——————————————————

              Sonny and I are very blessed you are here Marti Reed. Thank you for all you are doing— we appreciate you!
              ——————————————————————-
              And I understand that at least half the time you’re posting via less than adequate computers, networks, mobiles, whatever, while I’m sitting here comfortably on an iMac with all my files and networks attached directly to it.
              Reply: Exactly. So frustrating. Sundays are my favorite down time to be here and relax and read and write versus some tiny cell or local library where not consented grabbing happens as a possible ploy for b.s.—don’t have all the details just third party people saying do not go direct to him or he may call 911 for harassment and I am like ???? for what I just want first hand of what is going on???
              —————————————————–

              Your idea for Elizabeth to post that photo is spot on. As was your idea to cut the confusion on those Olympus photos by taking a photo and compare it to the time she took the photo, did exactly that–cut the confusion.
              Reply: it seem simple. If it is important than do it but if not than don’t. I am not asking for it o even thinking about it. Just saying claims can be made but also proven very simply as I said—
              ———————————————–

              And I’m not all that “pure.” I have my ahem moments
              ———————————————————-.
              reply: you know my husband always tells me how he loves the innocence and straight forwardness of my heart. Sonny views life almost cave man era like. He has a strong way about him that things are this kind of way and to me “loyalty” is number one but I am odd—as I tell my husband loyalty in the meaning even if I did wrong you would not protect me but be loyal to Him that I do right in this world yet all my life I always tended to others and my journey is self-seeking in some sorts with Sonny because hell I cant have a person who hikes like he does. I can go on with the blah, blah, blahs and reflect back and share to you a strange her’s life—mean a stranger’s life; mine but until I met Sonny my earlyhood I saw the depth of others’ darkness and learned the degrees of avoid ability (THE YHF) and degrees of accidents. John as Sonny knows has always been there for me. Early on (late 80’s/ early 90’s) I clamped down on the title gladly HOUSEWIFE; worked here and there but at the time did not have to with his income/lifestyle. It’s not that I am incapable of work because anyone reading this that I worked with know I overwork and I am hard-worker. When I allowed doctors “in” I saw the meaning of traditional, alternative, natural and all its own games…when I began to bury and then bury then bury again and again and again and again and so on…all the folk God guided to my life I began to seek refuge in my desert walking as the desert rooted me closer to Him. It was my own kind of medicine—called a dose of reality—I let myself go and really fast too. I did not realize I was almost 300 pounds and I range now from 175-185 range. There are folks who know me from the 109-133# range that when they saw me at 300 thought Father Time did me way wrong but why lay blame to him…I can’t tell you how many people knew me as the adrenaline junkie —aerobics junkie— stunt junkie than saw me FAT and thought ??? No way, not her. Why not me. We all go through phases in our lives different. I would walk to the end of my driveway huffing and puffing and walk back in the house and grab a haagen daz and hang out chatting with people most only will ever see on tv/movie not in person like I use to interact in that life—I would complain of that driveway hike—ow! My knees. Why bother? Than I locked on to the faces…the ghosts…the SAD way our world is…then Sonny shows up. To SEE the desert from his eyes—one of a kind. Today, he took a piece of desert glass and we will hang it tomorrow as he turned it into a heart and dremmel a cross on it and that is our dedication ornament for the Memorial Yarnell Christmas Tree from us. We cross our heart through the good times and bad we will be there for all affected by the YHF. That desert—to see nature caring for its young—beautiful to watch God’s creation just doing what He made it to do! It made me think of us all here. JUST BEING! I currently am not that adrenaline junkie and still a bit pudgie and I know I lay on the fugly side because people who knew me in the day have no problem telling me that for some reason. I am very very grateful we ALL have JD’s page here to share and care. We are all important—
              I do wish MORE people WHO KNEW THE MEN or were on the fire or locals came here to share—my hopes…still can try sharing about the page to whoever I meet–

              —————————————

              I’m so glad you’re here.

              Have a great day!
              ———reply: I am glad you are here Marti. Have a sweet night.

    • WantsToKnowTheTruth says

      Reply to Elizabeth post on December 5, 2014 at 9:19 am

      >> Elizabeth said…
      >>
      >> I continue to have or have access to all sorts of YHF-related
      >> information that folks on this board seem not to have access to.
      >>
      >> For example, with the Aaron Hulburd and other videos that the
      >> Arizona Forestry folks only recently posted on the internet, some
      >> of us either HAD those videos, had versions of them, or had access
      >> to them for months before it appears that JD finally did.

      So which is it?

      Since it’s impossible to know what you even mean by ‘some of us’… ( and I doubt you would elaborate on that even if asked )… let’s just FOCUS on YOU for a moment since YOU are the one who occasionally posts here.

      Did YOU actually HAVE all 21 of those Aaron Hulburd videos that were only published by Arizona Forestry on November 7 ‘months before anyone else did’… or did you NOT?

      OR… did YOU only have VERSIONS of them ‘months before anyone else did’?
      What do you mean by VERSIONS?

      OR… did YOU only have ACCESS to them ‘months before anyone else did’?
      What do you mean by ACCESS? Did you have some kind of ‘guest logon’ to
      the US Forestry Servers themselves?

      And in ANY of the ‘scenarios’ you are listing above that *might* apply to YOU… what do you mean by MONTHS? 2 months? 10 months? More? Less? Something in-between?

      >> Elizabeth also said…
      >>
      >> So, in short, when I state something as fact or I state that I am pretty
      >> certain of something, unless I specify otherwise, you can generally be
      >> pretty sure that I have the raw material (e.g. something more reliable
      >> than just statements in the SAIT or some such) to back up what I am saying.

      No. We can’t.

      Because of your poor communication skills and your reluctance to answer even the simplest questions with regards to ‘claims’ you make… we have NEVER been able to be ‘pretty sure’ you have ANY of the things you often say you have.

      Example: You SAID you had a copy of the Panebaker Air Study Video that contained the (supposed) radio callout from Paul Musser to DIVSA and you were then spouting ‘claims’ based on what you (supposedly) had… yet you would neither publish what you (supposedly) had anywhere OR ( more importantly ) even answer ANY simple questions that might prove you were telling the truth.

      It was obvious you were ( at that time ) refusing to post what you said you had anywhere where anyone else could see it or hear it… so I simply asked you about TWELVE TIMES to verify you had it by simply providing just the TIME OFFSET into the video where this (supposed) radio call from Paul Musser to DIVSA was actually taking place.

      It was important to know, at that time, since we were actively working on the full sequence of events in that same timeframe.

      You NEVER answered ANY of those queries for that simple piece of information.

      Any reasonable person would conclude that your continual reluctance to answer even a question as simple as that means there was a good chance you did NOT even have what you say you had.

      So no… we can’t ‘assume’ anything you ever say it TRUE unless you are willing to help us VERIFY that you might have what you say you have.

      TRUST but VERIFY. It’s nothing personal. It’s just part of the process.

      It’s a hole you have dug for yourself, Elizabeth… slowly and carefully… and YOU are the only one who can dig yourself out of it ( if you even care to ).

      A good START would be to now just answer the simple questions up above with regards to what you say you had ‘months before anyone else did’… AND the following (simple) questions…

      How did YOU come to either HAVE or HAVE ACCESS TO all 21 of the Aaron Hulburd videos prior to November 7 and (quote) “months before anyone else did”?

      Did YOU file your OWN FOIA request for the material?

      If so… did YOU file direct to Prescott National Forest, like InvestigativeMEDIA did… or did you file YOUR FOIA direct to the US Forestry Department?

      The actual DATE that you filed your FOIA would be helpful, of course.

      These are VERY simple ‘followup’ questions that deserve answers… and if ( once again ) you do NOT answer them… there really still is no reason to believe you are telling the truth even now…. or at anytime in the future.

      If you really don’t feel that this particular public discussion is ‘right for you’…. that’s fine.

      If that is the case… PLEASE stop posting here and wasting everyone’s time and PLEASE go find a place where you DO feel comfortable and find a way to properly ‘share’ what you might have or know.

      It’s not a ‘contest’.

      It doesn’t matter HOW the information ‘gets out’… so long as it does.

      • Bob Powers says

        Might not hurt to post the letter received from the FOIA request for the video request to Elizabeth. That every one else has posted like JD??????

      • Sonny says

        Thanks to Wants to Know the Truth–First I appreciate your repy to the legal questions I had, It definitely threw some light on them.

        Yes, I and others woul d like Elizabeth to answer correctly on the questions you posed her.

        I have an excuse–age and ignorance–but those learned bodies we have posting here should be more exacting and most important precise in their diatribes– Thanks for showing them their foibels

        • Joy A. Collura says

          Hey Sonny-

          She placed her full name to people and people put her name out publicly not her and she is a person in a current profession so maybe she is limited due to that fact and her resources and sources that she cannot share publicly but maybe in person she would. I would like to give her the benefit versus the doubt your post said because again we can analyze all day but I put the statement out and it did not need an audience or cheer squad Sonny. Yet I said GREAT if she can and GREAT if she can’t. We have no clue to her daily life and what she is able to share just be grateful what she has shared and even if I speak like this Sonny—it does not mean its an invite for a text or email or call—I just feel a lot of people are being attacked on here for no reason—I think RTS and all the others have stated some great stuff on here and well, I know in the end by old emails as I looked Sunday Calvin is Calvin and if there has to be a blend for Calvin to EN than its humorous to some points made could appear such but I will be shocked indeed if they were the same person. Now for all the other names lumped to one person— I never got emails from them so I cannot look into that. I just won’t continue on this topic anymore Sonny offline or here. I hope you understand. Happy trails to you too.

      • Sonny says

        Thanks to Wants to Know the Truth again–The HELMS would not have been a good lookout point, but behind the helms on that bouldery knoll or the end of the south ridge of the basin they died in would have been perfect and might have been where Marsh was at when the GMHS came down.

        He could have seen the fire coming around the north ridge from there and at the same time had a perfect view of all the canyon up to the two track. If he were at the Helms his vision would have been obscured by brush and much of the lower portion of the canyon. There are some small bouldery hills that would obscure parts of Seseme area as well. If that fire were paralleling Seseme for a time as they say then changed to the SW suddenly then he could have seen it from the point I mentioned. When I topped the mountain at 1 pm the wind was already moving SW at that time, although slightly. By the time I went back and fetched Joy and then again topped the mountain and follwed the two track until we dropped off in the boulders to the South on the Congress side, the wind had picked up considerably in the same SW direction. Whether currents were different below I cant say but in thunderstorm approaching conditions winds get squirrly and you sometimes see them switch like a witch on a broom.

  38. Bob Powers says

    I wanted to put this at the Top I apologized to Marti, WTKTT and FIRE20+ down below and again I want to say here. My statement was not meant to be s