Forestville fire crews patrol floodwaters by boat


FORESTVILLE (KRON) — “Looks like a trailer that was in a yard got flooded,” said Eric “Bob” Gromala with the Forestville Fire Department.

That trailer is just one of the hazards spotted by the Forestville Fire Department boat patrol in the Russian River in the town of Forestville.

“It’s about 10 feet deep at the house. Right now we are about 30-feet deep,” Gromala said.

Forestville Fire Engineer Gromala talks about the next patrol.

“We are going to drive down there and make sure that people don’t need help,” he said. “When we go down stream there’s probably going to be propane tanks, trailers, cars. As the water recedes it will be trapped in the trees and we’ll be looking out for those as hazards.”

Another potential hazard power lines that are usually way over head are now dangerously close because this section of the river has risen over 40-feet.

“When it’s two feet higher you can be taken out by power lines,” Gromala said.

There goes another Forestville fire patrol boat. They also use jet skis to patrol and overhead mutual aid by a CALFIRE helicopter.

“That should be copter 104 with CALFIRE. They’re looking for hazards and reporting to us on the radio,” he said.

What does this 16 1/2 year Forestville firefighter think of the damage caused by this flood?

“This is the most flooded I have seen it here” he said. “We’ve had a couple of other floods but this is the highest and most devastating houses down in the Hacienda area.”

There was no one in need of help on this patrol.

However as the river recedes, Forestville Fire Department officials say they are standing by just in case they are needed.



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