CALIFORNIA IN BRIEF : SACRAMENTO : New Strategy Set for Fire Season
Firefighters preparing for potentially the worst fire season in the state in years said they will gamble on a new aggressive strategy to hit blazes fast and hard. By throwing more resources at wildfires early while they are small, officials acknowledge, the plan could leave some areas of the state with thinner margins of protection than in the past. But they said the new rapid response strategy is the best way to prevent wildfires from sweeping huge sections of California’s forests and brushlands, left parched by a fourth consecutive year of drought. “It has the potential to be the worst fire season ever,” Dick Adams, regional fire management officer for the U.S. Forest Service, told a Capitol news conference. In preparation for this year’s fire season, federal, state and local agencies have added $15 million worth of resources to their firefighting arsenal, including 500 firefighters, 40 engines, 15 water tenders and 14 lookouts.