Press Releases

08/05/16 DPS PR# 16-034

Guidelines for Propane Safety

Over the past two weeks we have had two propane explosions which resulted in serious injury to 6 people. The Alaska State Fire Marshal’s Office would like to remind you to be safe regarding the use of Liquefied Propane Gas (LPG). As propane is used in many remote locations and rural communities in Alaska for heating, it is imperative to follow basic, but necessary safety guidelines:

  • If you smell a strong odor of gas (rotten eggs) leave the area immediately and call the fire department or local Public Safety Office from outside.
  • Handle any propane-powered equipment cautiously and always follow the manufacturer's instructions.
  • Cylinder tanks for equipment such as stoves and ovens must be located outside of the home.
  • Never store or use propane gas cylinders larger than one pound inside the home.
  • Never operate a propane-powered gas grill inside the home.
  • Have propane gas equipment inspected periodically by a professional for possible leaks or malfunctioning parts.

NFPA Propane safety
REMEMBER: Fire Is Everyone’s Fight
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For more information contact: Michael Warzewick
Training and Education Bureau – Public Education Coordinator
5700 E. Tudor Road, Anchorage, AK 99645 – Voice (907) 269-5481 – Fax (907) 269-0102

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08/02/16 DPS PR #16-033

Big Game Guide Charged After Lengthy Investigation by AWT

(ANCHORAGE, Alaska) – On July 5, 2016, registered big game guide Garrett W. Cox, age 49 of Anchorage, permanently surrendered his registered guide license and future right to practice any class of guide or transporter service in an agreement he made with the Office of Special Prosecutions and the Big Game Commercial Services Board.

Mr. Cox was charged in March 2016 with several counts related to guiding offenses after an investigation conducted by the Alaska Wildlife Troopers, Wildlife Investigations Unit revealed that in 2011 Mr. Cox and former business partner Vernon C. Humble, age 76 of Arizona, had allowed several of their unlicensed employees, or “packers,” to guide clients while unaccompanied by licensed professionals in pursuit of big game animals in hunts conducted near Icy Bay west of Yakutat. Mr. Cox was also charged for participating in two brown bear hunts at Icy Bay where two of his employees took brown bears without purchasing the required $500 non-resident brown bear locking tags. The Office of Special Prosecutions negotiated a resolution with Mr. Cox resulting in the permanent forfeiture of his registered guide license.

The packers involved, Jonathan Monier, age 29 of Illinois, Phillip Zimmermann, age 29 of Wyoming, and Brandon Kolstad, age 27 of North Dakota, were convicted of charges related to the illegal take of brown bears. Zimmermann and Monier were convicted of taking brown bear without the required nonresident tag. Kolstad was convicted of hunting without the proper tags and possession of illegally taken game. They agreed to cooperate with the state in the proceedings involving Mr. Cox and were sentenced to pay fines and restitution for the bears taken without nonresident tags.

Mr. Humble and Mr. Cox had previously been investigated and prosecuted for offenses occurring in 2012. In those matters Mr. Humble agreed to surrender his Master Guide license for life and Mr. Cox was fined $3,100 and received a one year guide license suspension.

As this case illustrates, illegal guiding activity in Alaska is thoroughly investigated and prosecuted. For allowing unlicensed packers to act as assistant guides, Mr. Cox has permanently forfeited his ability to continue his career as a registered guide outfitter. The Alaska Wildlife Troopers and Office of Special Prosecutions hope that this case serves as a reminder to other guides and hunters about the consequences of failing to follow the laws designed to protect natural resources within Alaska.

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07/29/16 DPS PR #16-032

State of Alaska Assists Community of Slana by Donating Fire Truck

Alaska State Fire Marshal David L. Tyler announced today that the community of Slana will be the recipient of a fire truck donated on behalf of the State of Alaska. Due to budget reductions, the Division of Fire and Life Safety Northern Office, located in Fairbanks, has been closed. Equipment is being disbursed throughout the State to enhance training and emergency response capabilities in rural communities.

The 2006 Pierce Saber fire truck is a valuable resource that will enhance emergency response capabilities for the community of Slana and its emergency response personnel. The fire department members will transport the fire truck to Slana and house, maintain and put-into-service the apparatus.

“I am pleased to announce this donation, on behalf of the State of Alaska. We are committed to serving all fire departments, in particular those serving rural Alaskans, and this fire truck will provide a valued asset” said State Fire Marshal Tyler.

               REMEMBER: Fire Is Everyone’s Fight
####
For more information contact: Michael Warzewick
Training and Education Bureau – Public Education Coordinator
5700 E. Tudor Road, Anchorage, AK 99645 – Voice (907) 269-5481 – Fax (907) 269-0102

PDF Version of Release