Arizona deploys resources to California to support fire suppression

October 11, 2017 - 4:51 pm
Fire equipment and personnel are deploying to California to support wildland fire suppression efforts through state-to-state mutual aid compact.

“Arizona understands the devastating impact wildfires can have on communities,” said Governor Ducey.  “We are proud to support our neighboring state with vital response resources to enhance fire suppression efforts. Our unwavering gratitude is with the brave men and women fighting these fires.”

The Department of Forestry and Fire Management is sending 55 engines and 150 firefighters to assist with fires in Santa Rosa and Napa to be used as strike teams for structure protection.

“Arizona is always ready to lend a hand wherever we are needed and we will provide as much equipment and fire personnel, as possible, to help California with their fire suppression efforts. This has been a devastating fire season for many states, including Arizona, so of course, we will do whatever we can to help,” said Arizona State Forester Jeff Whitney.

The Arizona Department of Emergency and Military Affairs (DEMA) is Arizona’s lead agency for processing resource requests through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC).  When DEMA receives the resource request, the information is shared with statewide response agencies that may be able to provide the support.  After the resource is identified, the requesting state confirms the request and the resource is deployed.

“The state-to-state mutual aid system is force multiplier that allows the exact need to be matched with the corresponding resource, “said Wendy Smith-Reeve, deputy director of the Arizona Department of Emergency and Military Affairs and the director of the Department’s Division of Emergency Management.  “We are able to support the impacted communities and jurisdictions and bring back lessons learned from the experience.”

During the 2017 hurricane season, resources have deployed to Texas, Florida, the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact.  Since 2006, DEMA has coordinated more than 30 mutual aid mission requests to 17 states.