Australian Firefighter Burned Battling Wildfire Dies

Firefighter Wendy Bearfoot and another firefighter were severely burned on Oct. 12 when their apparatus was overrun by flames.


One of two Australian firefighters critically injured battling a wildfire last month has died.

Firefighter Wendy Bearfoot, 45, suffered burns to 60 percent of her body while battling the blaze at Two Peoples Bay on Oct. 12 and was flown to Royal Perth Hospital, where she remained until her death, according to PerthNow.com.

Bearfoot and another firefighter were operating at a pine plantation on a private property when their apparatus was overrun by flames.

The unidentified 24-year-old female firefighter suffered burns to 40 percent of her body and is reportedly still recovering in the hospital.

Preliminary reports state that the firefighters were caught when strong winds caused the fire to suddenly change direction.

An investigation into the incident is currently ongoing.

Bearfoot joined the then Department of Conservation and Land Management in 2003.

"She loved the work she did and was highly valued and respected by all who knew her and had the privilege to work alongside her," Department of Environment and Conservation Director-General Keiran McNamara said. "This is a difficult period of grief and reflection for all WA firefighters and I ask that you honor Wendy's courage in protecting the community and land she loved from bushfire."

Bearfoot is survived by her husband, Garry, and sons Steve, Geoffrey and Josh.

Funeral arrangements are pending.

Firehouse.com will provide more information on this story as it becomes available.