The air attack coordinator flying on the Coldwater Fire Saturday spotted a drone within the Temporary Flight Restriction area and grounded the helicopter assigned to the fire until it was safe to resume any needed flying operations.
There is a TFR over the fire area, and it is illegal to operate a private drone near any wildfire. Saturday, the air attack, fixed-wing pilot, reported a private drone within the TFR. Drones near wildfires create a serious safety hazard for fire aircraft and result in aircraft being grounded immediately.
On Tuesday, August 1st through Friday, August 4th the Forest Service plans to conduct the annual aerial survey for insect and disease outbreaks on the Prescott National Forest. Forest Service airplanes and helicopters regularly fly over private, state, and National Forest System lands at low altitudes to perform a variety of natural resource management missions, including insect and disease surveys, remote sensing to acquire aerial images and data, and firefighting.