Fire crews battling a wildfire should identify escape routes and safe zones. They should pay close attention to the weather forecast. And they should post lookouts. In the nation's biggest loss of ... more 
Fire crews battling a wildfire should identify escape routes and safe zones. They should pay close attention to the weather forecast. And they should post lookouts. In the nation's biggest loss of firefighters since 9/11, violent wind gusts turned what was believed to be a relatively manageable lightning-ignited forest fire in the town of Yarnell into a death trap that left no escape for a team of Hotshots.The tragedy raised questions of whether the crew should have been pulled out much earlier and whether all the usual precautions would have made any difference at all in the face of triple-digit temperatures, erratic winds and tinderbox conditions that caused the fire to explode. More than 1,000 people gathered in the gym on the Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University campus as others throughout the state and beyond also mourned the deaths of the 19 Prescott-based firefighters killed outside nearby Yarnell, Arizona. The day marked the nation's deadliest for fire crews since Sept. 11, 2001. A memorial service was held for the 19 members of the Granite Mountain Hotshots, based in Prescott, Ariz., who were killed when a windblown wildfire overcame them north of Phoenix. It was the deadliest single day for U.S. firefighters since Sept. 11. less 
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Wochit
Wed, Jul 3, 2013 4:09 AM EDT