A MESSAGE FROM THE FIRE CHIEF STEVE LEIGHTON
Steve Leighton is the Fire Chief of the North Tahoe Fire and Meeks Bay Fire Protection Districts, serving the north and west shores of Lake Tahoe, and the communities in Alpine Meadows. Chief Leighton is a 29-year veteran of the fire service.
2021 Fall/Winter Update
Welcome to the North Tahoe Fire Protection District. I am honored to serve as your Fire Chief, and to lead the brave men and women dedicated to providing the highest possible level of fire and life safety to the communities we serve.
The varied demographics of the district’s service area, spanning from the Nevada state line to iconic Emerald Bay and out to the pristine Alpine Meadows, provide opportunity for our highly trained personnel to respond to emergencies in a variety of unique alpine settings. Our team members serve our public with compassion and respect. North Tahoe Fire is an all-hazard emergency organization, which requires our firefighters to be skilled in wildland and structural firefighting, back country/technical rescue, swift and shore-zone water rescue, hazardous materials mitigation, and Advanced Life Support Emergency Medical Services.
As we welcome the seasonal shift from smoke in the air to snow on the ground, please be aware of seasonal hazards associated with mountain living. As the cool weather drives us to heat our homes, it’s important to have working Carbon Monoxide (CO) alarms on every level of the home, outside of sleeping areas, outside of attached garages, and anywhere there is a fuel burning device. Carbon Monoxide is often referred to as the silent killer because it is odorless and invisible, and therefore undetectable to people without an alarm. The toxic gas kills by depriving the blood stream of oxygen, essentially suffocating its victims. Symptoms include headache, dizziness, disorientation, nausea, and difficulty coordinating or breathing. It is not uncommon for people new to the high Sierra to confuse the symptoms of CO poisoning with altitude sickness.
The cooler weather also brings an increase in structure fires, so please make sure your fireplace/chimney/wood burning stove has been cleaned, inspected and is in safe working order. Inspect all appliance exhaust systems to ensure they have not become blocked by forest litter, debris, or nesting rodents. If space heaters are being used, place them three feet away from anything combustible and away from the path of traffic. Never use a surge protector to power a heating device; instead plug the device directly into a wall outlet. Working smoke alarms should be installed on each level of your home, in each bedroom, and outside of each sleeping area.
In times of heavy snow, it’s important to maintain your structure’s roof systems by safely mitigating roof shed hazards, excessive snow build-up and hazardous icicle formation. Steer pets and people clear of roof shed areas, clear gas lines and meters of snow and ice, and clear three feet around hydrants near your home.
All members of the North Tahoe Fire Protection District are here to serve you every hour of every day. If you have any questions regarding the District or the services we provide, please do not hesitate to email me or call me at (530) 583-6911.
Steve Leighton, Fire Chief
North Tahoe Fire Protection District (NTFPD) was formed in 1993 with the consolidation of the Tahoe City Fire Department (Est. 1941) and North Tahoe Fire (Est. 1957). NTFPD provides service via contract to the Meeks Bay Fire Protection District (2014), to the community of Alpine Meadows (2006), and provides ambulance transport for the community of Olympic Valley.