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DNR Dispatches Firefighters To Battle California Wildfire
9-member team of specialists left BWI Airport early Friday
ANNAPOLIS — Nine Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) personnel with special training in wildland firefighting were dispatched today to a federal park near Redding, Calif., where a timber and brush fire is threatening communication towers and power lines and could consume park cabins and historic buildings.
“Maryland's firefighters are once again proving that Marylanders know no boundaries. Whether the emergency is occurring here at home or in another state overwhelmed by disaster, I am proud that California and states across the nation can turn to Maryland for assistance," said Governor O’Malley.
“California’s wildfire season is off to an unusually early start after enduring its driest spring in 114 years,” noted Maryland Forest Service Director Steve Koehn. “Firefighters have been battling hundreds of fires across the state after a series of lightning strikes this past weekend.”
Maryland’s team departed from the Thurgood Marshall Baltimore-Washington International Airport about 7:30 a.m. Friday, equipped with their personal protective equipment and gear packs. They’ll spend 14 days on the line fighting a timber and brush fire in the Whiskeytown National Recreation Area, 12 miles west of Redding, Calif. The team consists of four members of the Maryland Forest Service, three members of the Wildlife and Heritage Service, one member of the Maryland Park Service, and one member of the Maryland Conservation Corps. All are certified wildland firefighters.
June 27, 2008
Contact: Wiley Hall
410-260-8002 office I 410-507-7526 cell
Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is the state agency responsible for providing natural and living resource-related services to citizens and visitors. DNR manages more than 449,000 acres of public lands and 17,000 miles of waterways, along with Maryland's forests, fisheries and wildlife for maximum environmental, economic and quality of life benefits. A national leader in land conservation, DNR-managed parks and natural, historic and cultural resources attract 12 million visitors annually. DNR is the lead agency in Maryland's effort to restore the Chesapeake Bay, the state's number one environmental priority. Learn more at www.dnr.maryland.gov