A Bureau of Land Management firefighter was killed Friday afternoon in an accident while working on a hazard-tree removal project, the BLM office reported in a news release Saturday.
Craig resident Brett Stearns, 29, was killed about 4:30 p.m. Friday during a hazard tree abatement project at Freeman Reservoir, 15 miles northeast of Craig.
The accident is under investigation by a federal accident investigation team.
Stearns was working on a project with about 12 other BLM firefighters when he was struck by a falling tree. He was pronounced dead on the scene.
Stearns was an engine captain and had worked in the fire program for the BLM Little Snake Field Office in Craig since 1999. He is survived by his wife, mother, father, brother and half sister, the BLM reported.
"On behalf of the Little Snake Field Office and the Northwest Colorado Interagency Fire Management Unit, I offer my condolences to the family and friends of Brett Stearns," said John Husband, Little Snake Field Office manager. "He dedicated his life to protecting the lives and property of the public. Firefighting is a dangerous profession and firefighter safety is the number one priority on fires and projects such as this."