Smokejumper seriously injured while parachuting into a fire in New Mexico

He was evacuated to a hospital in El Paso, Texas

Updated 9:11 a.m. MDT May 29, 2021

Tim Hart

A Gofundme account has been set up for Tim Hart who was seriously injured while parachuting into the Eicks Fire in southeastern New Mexico. He works out of the jumper base at West Yellowstone, Montana.

Below is the text from Gofundme, May 29, 2021:

On May 24th, West Yellowstone Smokejumper Tim Hart suffered multiple injuries after a hard landing during a fire jump in southern New Mexico. Tim was flown via air ambulance to a hospital in El Paso, Texas where he remains in critical condition.

Tim has been a wildland firefighter since 2006.  He began his career working on an engine  for the Coconino National Forest, and continued in that capacity on the  Fremont-Winema NF and the Shoshone NF.  After his engine time, he became a Lead Firefighter and Squadleader on the Asheville Interagency hotshot crew.  He later held squadleader positions on  Augusta IHC  and  Ruby Mountain IHC.  Tim accepted a rookie smokejumper position in  2016 at Grangeville, Idaho.  He moved to the West Yellowstone Smokejumper Base as a squadleader in 2019. Tim’s talents and natural leadership have been a big part in the success of all the functional areas here in West.  He is willing to take things on very thoughtfully and methodically, and with a sense of humor.

Whatever the task is in front of him- whether it’s preparing for fire jumps or cargo drops, building furniture for his new home in Cody, WY or improvising a musical jam session with his wife Michelle, he rises to the challenge!  His “get- it- done” attitude will serve him well on his journey to recovery.

Thank you for supporting Tim and his family during this incredibly difficult time. They have a long road ahead of them, and any burden we may be able to lift would be greatly appreciated.

Keep Tim in your thoughts and prayers…. and keep the whiskey nearby to celebrate all of Tim’s victories down the road.

6:15 p.m. MDT May 26, 2021

Map of Eicks Fire
Map showing the location of the Eicks Fire.

A U.S. Forest Service smoke jumper was seriously injured Monday after a hard landing at a wildfire in New Mexico. Tim Hart of Cody, Wyoming was dispatched to help suppress the Eicks Fire in the Animas Mountains of southeastern New Mexico, nine miles north of the Mexico border. He works out of the jumper base at West Yellowstone, Montana.

Mr. Hart was flown by air ambulance to a hospital in El Paso. “The Forest Service’s first priority is to provide for him and his family right now,” said Marna Daley, Forest Service spokeswoman. “We are working with the smokejumper and firefighter community to make sure those needs are being met.”

The Eicks Fire has burned 850 acres of grass and brush since it was reported May 24, 2021 in very rugged terrain along the Continental Divide. No structures have burned and none are threatened.

Some media outlets initially reported that the injured person was a Hotshot firefighter, but in a Congressional hearing on Tuesday Chief of the Forest Service Vicki Christiansen said it was a smokejumper.

3D Map of Eicks Fire
3D map showing the approximate location of the Eicks Fire, May 25, 2021. Looking North.

Thanks and a tip of the hat go out to Tom.

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2 thoughts on “Smokejumper seriously injured while parachuting into a fire in New Mexico”

  1. A seasonal? Nobody, NObody, NOBODY cares, as long as their own “security and bennies” are not affected. When he gets out of the hospital, I hope his family has been able to scratch together enough to buy themselves a better quality tarp. Because “Blue Tarp Living” with no hope for a future just sucks.

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