Tag Archives: firefighting

U.S. Forest Service expands tanker fleet

Well, this is encouraging. The Forest Service managed to scrape up some more firefighting aircraft this year. Even more would be better, but . . .

As the Obama administration pushes Congress to ensure that enough money is available to fight destructive wildfires, the U.S. Forest Service announced Tuesday it was adding four aircraft to its firefighting fleet ahead of what’s expected to be another hot, dry summer in the West.

In a statement, the service said it will have a second DC10 and three smaller planes in service in the coming weeks to support over 10,000 firefighters “in the face of what is shaping up to be a catastrophic fire season in the southwest.”

The Forest Service expects to exceed this year’s budget in July, two months before this fiscal year ends. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack discussed 2015 budget proposals by the administration Tuesday in Colorado, where deadly fires in 2012 and 2013 destroyed hundreds of homes.

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