Investigators: Firefighters needed more ‘tools’ in defense of Sperry Chalet

The four firefighters assigned to Sperry Chalet the night it burned in an ember storm were traumatized by the historic building’s loss, with one describing it as a “gut punch” in an interview with investigators. But they were up against long odds: a remote site, the chalet’s perch at the top of a natural chimney, too few resources, no training in structural firefighting, no ability to shelter-wrap a tall building, multiple buildings to defend, and wholly unrealistic public expectations.