In 1999, the King County Sheriff’s Office and the King County Department of Transportation entered into a partnership to provide a unique combination of services to the King County International Airport (KCIA). The KCIA needed to meet both policing and fire fighting requirements at the field commonly referred to as “Boeing Field.” In a unique agreement and departure from traditional police work, the KCSO agreed to provide both services.
Today, our employees perform aircraft rescue fire fighting (ARFF), law enforcement, and airport safety inspections. The KCIA team includes 18 deputies and sergeants, as well as a captain who serves as the police and fire chief. Our airport deputies hold full police commissions and are members of the King County Police Officers Guild. In addition, they are required to complete the ARFF Basic Academy and obtain a Washington State Fire Fighter I certification and Emergency Medical Technician certification.
Aircraft Rescue Fire Fighting & Law Enforcement
Aircraft Rescue Fire Fighting involves responding to aircraft emergencies including fuel spills and providing life safety fire fighting services. This duty requires specialized equipment and significant ongoing fire rescue training for all personnel.
The KCIA Unit members are also responsible for all law enforcement activities on airport property. In addition to providing general airport security and ensuring that only authorized persons have access to restricted areas, the unit also performs typical arrests on and around the airport for criminal traffic, driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI), narcotics possession, trespass, vandalism, and vehicle theft.
Airport Safety Inspections
The airport safety inspections performed by our personnel in the KCIA Unit are regulated by Part 139 of Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations. This function involves a variety of activities that include multiple daily inspections of all taxiway and runway areas for damage or irregularities. The unit also makes regular checks for foreign object debris, inappropriate or hazardous aircraft parking, inoperable lighting or signage, and wildlife.