Station 81 shooting prompts county review of firefighter trauma

Curtis, a firefighter with the Los Angeles City Fire Department leads a vigil in the wake of a deadly shooting at LACoFD Fire Station 81 Tuesday morning. June 01, 2021. Bobby Block / The Signal.

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors will discuss Tuesday a strategy to address workplace trauma in the L.A. County Fire Department. 

A motion introduced by Supervisor Kathryn Barger states there is “an immediate need to identify and implement solutions” in light of the Fire Station 81 shooting in Agua Dulce earlier this month. 

“I am committed to providing firefighters with the services they need to minimize the long-lasting impact that exposure to traumatic incidents can have,” Barger said in a prepared statement. “I will continue to work alongside our Fire Department and labor partners to provide healing and help to Los Angeles County fire personnel.”   

Barger’s motion directs the Fire Department, with the support of other county departments, to prepare a report exploring the “feasibility of developing a mechanism to address workplace trauma or potential workplace trauma.” 

Among the proposals listed in the motion is the creation of a unit with a “culturally competent” lead, assistant and contracting clinician to address workplace trauma. 

The motion also calls for planned mental health visits to Fire Department personnel and their families with “culturally competent clinicians.” 

Other strategies include analyzing workers compensation treatment tools, reducing the frequency of staff recall, reducing vacancies, providing peer support groups and streamlining communications. 

The Fire Station 81 shooting left Fire Specialist Tory Carlon, 44, dead and Capt. Arnie Sandoval, 55, critically wounded. The shooter, who later took his own life, was a fire specialist at Station 81. 

The Board of Supervisors is scheduled to meet Tuesday at 10 a.m. More information about the meeting is available at 

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