Thursday, May 5, 2016

Rangeland Fire Protection Association in Idaho Moving Ahead with New Equipment

New fire suppression equipment.  Photo: Troy Colson, KTVB
Rural Idahoans are coming together to help stop small fires from becoming big ones.  Ranchers on the Oregon-Idaho border saw how rampant a fire can spread last year, destroying people's livelihoods for years to come. Modeled after Oregon's fire protection associations, Idaho's RFPAs were established 2012: the first in Mountain Home, followed by the group in the Owyhee Rangelands.
The Owyhee Rural Fire Protection Association recently received some new equipment to fight fires on both public and private grazing land. The association has been waiting on this equipment for years and they're relieved to finally have a new fleet to fight wildfires. This group of about 65 members gets their equipment from the federal excess program, while all their personal protection gear and radios come from the Idaho Department of Lands. Fully prepared and equipped to fight fires, these volunteers are trained by the BLM. 
RFPAs are an excellent example of cooperating between private landowners and agencies; and utilizing existing opportunities to improve wildfire response.  Nice Cohesive Strategy effort folks! 

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