Volunteer Firefighter International

Volunteer Firefighter Dies in Crash After 2 EMS Calls

EMS crews quickly began CPR, which continued for an hour in the emergency department

By Firefighter Close Calls

On November 27, Kalama Fire (Cowlitz County, Wash. Fire District 5) Firefighter Lt. Al Basso responded to two medical emergencies with Kalama Fire. Later that day, the tones rang for Kalama Fire for a motor vehicle crash with a possible medical emergency.

An off-duty City of Vancouver, Wash. firefighter was first on the scene, and identified the driver as unconscious unresponsive, without a pulse. He pulled him from the vehicle and started CPR.

When Kalama fire personnel arrived, literally within 1 minute, they realized they were responding to one of their own, somebody who they had already made two runs earlier in the day. Lieutenant Al Basso was in cardiac arrest. Crews feverishly attempted to resuscitate him with a quick transportation time and the emergency room continued resuscitation efforts for nearly an hour.

Sadly, Al did not survive.

Al retired from Longview Fire Department (IAFF Local 828) (Wash.) and put in roughly 21 years as a career firefighter with LFD, retiring on January 14, 2020 at the rank of Lieutenant.

After his retirement he volunteered back to his original fire department, Kalama Fire (Cowlitz County Fire District 5) where he lost his life yesterday.

When Available: Memorial details will be posted here.

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