News Releases

CDCR Inmate Firefighter Dies of Injuries

SAN DIEGO – The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) today announced that an inmate firefighter has died as the result of injuries sustained while working on a fire line in San Diego County.

The inmate firefighter, Frank Anaya, 22, was fighting a grass fire near the town of Lakeside on July 5, when his leg and femoral artery were severely cut. Firefighters at the scene immediately gave Anaya advanced life support care and CPR until he was transported to a hospital, where he underwent multiple surgeries.

Anaya succumbed to his injuries at 4:30 a.m. this morning at an area hospital.

“We are saddened by the death of Frank Anaya, and our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends,” said CDCR Secretary Scott Kernan. “Anaya provided an invaluable public service and helped protect our communities from devastating fires.”

Anaya, who was assigned to the La Cima Conservation Camp in San Diego County, was received by CDCR from Ventura County in September, 2016. He was serving a three-year sentence.

He is the second inmate firefighter to die this year and the fifth since the conservation program was created in the 1940s.

Approximately 3,900 inmates, all volunteers, are housed in 43 conservation camps operated by CDCR, in conjunction with CAL FIRE, the State of California’s wildland fire-fighting agency, and the Los Angeles County Fire Department. Working in fire crews of 12 to 17 members, CDCR firefighters often work in rugged backcountry conditions, using hand tools to cut containment lines to stop the spread of wildland fires.

July 11, 2017

Contact: Bill Sessa, (916) 445-4590