Watch Frontiers this Sunday at 5 p.m. on KTVA Channel 11.


A fire that raced through a Napakiak jail last Sunday has brought attention to the lack of fire protection in off-the-road system communities.

Becca White and Isaiah Parka died in the flames. Investigators haven’t determined the cause of the fire, but are looking into reports the two were trapped inside their cells after a mattress was set on fire.

White, who was 24 — and Parka, who was two years younger — were described as best friends. Community members say they were taken to the jail to sober up.

Two jail guards were injured in the fire. Clarence Rickteroff was sent to Seattle’s Harborview Medical Center, where he remains in the intensive care unit, listed in serious but improving condition.

When it comes to fatal fires, Alaska has one of the highest death rates in the nation. This Sunday, one week after Napakiak’s fatal fire, KTVA’s Frontiers program takes a closer look at the tragedy, as well the lack of resources to fight fires in rural communities. 

Frontiers airs on Sunday at 5 p.m. on KTVA Channel 11. You can also watch Frontiers on GCI Cable Channel 907 on Sundays at 8:30 a.m. and 10:30 p.m.

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