Private Firefighters

Colorado Springs: When firefighter Eric Morris shows up at wildfires across the West, locals battling the flames sometimes look at him and wonder who sent him.

The answer isn’t a public agency. It’s an insurance company.

Morris is among a group of private firefighters hired in recent years to protect homes with high-end insurance policies. In a wildfire season that is one of the busiest and most destructive ever to hit the region, authorities and residents say their help is welcome.

…For insurers, hiring them is worth the cost. They spend thousands on well-equipped, federally rated firefighters, potentially saving hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of dollars to replace a home and its contents.

Private fire fighters benefit the insured and also the non-insured because the extra manpower lets public firefighters divert their attention elsewhere. Since there are spillovers, private firefighters are under supplied.

Hat tip: Tyler Watts.


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