Mass. firefighters deployed to fight forest blaze in Idaho
Twenty Massachusetts state and municipal wildland firefighters have been deployed to Idaho today to help battle the Trinity Ridge fire, which has burned through more than 37,000 acres in the Boise National Forest since last week, officials said.
The crew left Logan International Airport this morning. Once they arrive in Idaho, they will work on the fire line for 14 days, building fire breaks, securing fire perimeters, containing fires, and protecting structures, the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation said in a statement.
The wildfire began on the afternoon of Friday, Aug. 3. Officials believe it was caused by humans. There are currently 56 uncontained fires burning nationally, the department said. The fires are covering 917,000 acres, most of the land in Idaho and Montana.
“We are extremely proud of the DCR and municipal firefighters who have been called upon to help our friends in the western states,” Commissioner Ed Lambert said in the statement, “These are extremely well-trained and dedicated firefighters whose skills are much needed, and whose help, we know, is enormously appreciated.”
The department started sending crews to assist other states in 1985 after a cooperative agreement with the US Forest Service. In the past, Massachusetts has sent crews to fight fires in a number of states and the province of Quebec, Canada.Sarah N. Mattero can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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