Dozer operator killed in vehicle accident in California

He was driving to the North Fire on I-80

Tuesday morning September 11 at about 5:45 a.m., Antonio (Tony) Flores 37, an employee of Kent Siller Trucking, was involved in a fatal vehicle accident on Interstate 80 near Blue Canyon, California between Sacramento and Reno. Mr. Flores was assigned to the North Fire as a private contractor operating a bulldozer. He was driving to the incident command post at the Blue Canyon Airport.

Incident Commander Curtis Coots said that the personnel working on the North Fire are deeply saddened by the death of a fellow firefighter. “This has been an extremely tough fire season for our firefighters both physically and emotionally”, Mr. coots said.

Mr. Flores is survived by his wife of 18 years and four children, ranging in ages from 9 to 16 years old. He is a lifelong resident of the Yuba City area.

He has worked for Kent Siller Trucking for more than 20 years as a master mechanic and heavy equipment operator.

The cause of the accident is under investigation by the California Highway Patrol and the Placer County Sheriff-Coroner’s Office.

Since it started September 3 the North Fire has burned 1,120 acres nine miles northeast of Alta, Calif. It has not grown in the last 24 hours and will transition back to the local unit today, September 12.

Our sincere condolences go out to Mr. Flores’ family, friends, and co-workers.

Thanks and a tip of the hat go out to Tom.
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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. Google+

One thought on “Dozer operator killed in vehicle accident in California”

  1. I served ten years in the Army. Our leadership training and assigned EMT medics are great at minimizing these terrible and tragic deaths. We care about our people and keep and eye on them. “No, you are not going to play tough guy, you are going to the medic, that is an order”. With regard to staffing we do overkill on levels just in case. I am not surprised that many of these deaths are contractors. They minimize staffing levels to make a profit and as you can see it has horrific consequences that may have been avoidable if staffing had been done right. I think we need several brigades of soldiers trained in firefighting. Medics assigned too. They are accustomed to hard conditions.

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