Two firefighters killed and two injured in Florida fire

UPDATE at 10:56 a.m. MT, June 21, 2011:

CNN has more information this morning:

…The two Florida Division of Forestry firefighters died Monday while fighting a wildfire in north-central Florida that had been declared contained but which suddenly burst out of control, Amanda Bevis, a division spokeswoman, said Tuesday.

“They were both in tractors, and the fire literally just caught up with them,” she said.

The firefighters were identified as Josh Burch, 31, and Brett Fulton, 52. Both were Forest Rangers with the forestry division working the Blue Ribbon Fire in Hamilton County.

“The wildfires have ravaged our state, burning more than 200,000 acres, and now, they have taken the lives of two of our very own men,” Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam said in a statement.

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Two other firefighters were injured trying to rescue their colleagues, Bevis said. They were treated and released Monday and will make full recoveries, she said.


CNN and numerous other news outlets are reporting that two firefighters in Florida died while fighting a wildfire on Monday.

From CNN:

A pair of firefighters died in north Florida on Monday while battling the Blue Ribbon wildfire in Hamilton County, the Florida Division of Forestry said.

“My thoughts and prayers go out to the families and loved ones of the two courageous men who sacrificed their lives for the safety of others,” said Florida Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam. “We can rebuild the structures and restore the land, but the lives of these two heroes can never be replaced.”

Two other firefighters also were injured on the same fire. Both were treated for smoke and heat-related injuries and released from local hospitals.

The Blue Ribbon Fire started Thursday and had previously been declared contained, but it flared again Monday.

Our sincere condolences go out to the families and coworkers of the four firefighters.

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Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire.

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