Governor Jan Brewer today highlighted Arizona’s participation in ongoing wildfire suppression efforts in Colorado and New Mexico.
“I commend the Arizona State Forestry Division for its active role in helping our neighbors in need,” said Governor Brewer. “Our state knows well the havoc these blazes wreak on infrastructure, land and communities. The most devastating impact, of course, is the loss of human life and property. My heart goes out to the families of the two Coloradans killed as a result of these fires.
“Out-of-state aid and collaboration are critically important in fighting these massive fires. States have come to Arizona’s aid in the past, and we are able to return the favor by providing critical equipment, manpower to our friends in Colorado and New Mexico.”
As of Friday, June 14, Arizona has dispatched eight pieces of fire equipment to Colorado – including four wildland engines and four water tenders. All contributions – with the exception of one privately-contracted water tender – have been provided by Arizona fire departments. The equipment has been sent in response to three fast-growing fires which, to date, have burned more than 19,000 acres. According to the National Interagency Fire Coordination Center, the nearly 16,000-acre Black Forest Fire near Colorado Springs has destroyed 360 homes and 24 outbuildings.
Arizona also is supporting New Mexico as it continues to battle five large fires, burning more than 56,000 acres. Our state currently has seven pieces of fire equipment assigned to New Mexico – including five engines, one water tender and one structure protection trailer. We also have sent 54 incident management team personnel to assist in the containment of the fires. All resources have been provided by the Arizona State Forestry Division, Arizona fire departments and private contractors.
“I am pleased we can help support our neighboring States with these available resources for their catastrophic wildfires, as they often reciprocate to Arizona in our time of need,” said Scott Hunt, Arizona State Forester. “Since Arizona is also in the midst of its fire season, the State Forestry Division is still maintaining extra firefighting capacity for in-state response.”