New fire station opens atop Snoqualmie Pass
July 26, 2011 · 1:58 PM
The all-volunteer Snoqualmie Pass Fire and Rescue force is operating out of a brand new facility.
The new Snoqualmie Pass Fire Station had its grand opening celebration on Saturday, July 16. Station 291 will help meet the growing emergency response needs of Snoqualmie Pass Fire and Rescue on one of the busiest mountain highways in the country.
In 2009, when the Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA) declared a major disaster due to storms that tore through parts of Washington state, Snoqualmie Pass Fire and Rescue responded. In recent years, the pass has been the scene of major winter snowstorms, multi-vehicle accidents and avalanches. The Fire District is often the first responder to incidents in the area, which is prone to rock slides and avalanches, and it is not uncommon for the community to be isolated for hours or even days at a time.
Snoqualmie Pass Fire Department serves a portion of King and Kittitas counties on both sides of the Cascade Mountains, a community of 350 full-time residents that peaks to 1,500 during the ski season. Snoqualmie Pass is the most heavily traveled east-west highway crossing in Washington state, with an average of 27,000 vehicles passing through each day. Nearly 60,000 vehicles travel through the fire district during peak times, making it one of the busiest mountain highways in the country. With traffic on the rise and the need for emergency services in the area growing, the fire district was in desperate need of a true fire station.
Station 291 replaces the old station, which was built in the 1920s as a Department of Transportation Maintenance shed.