USFS prepositioning firefighting resources in advance of fire weather watch


By Ann Bond

The National Weather Service has issued a Fire Weather Watch for the afternoon and evening of Tuesday, June 21, for all of Archuleta County, northeast LaPlata County, and all of San Juan and Hinsdale counties. Dry thunderstorms, gusty winds and low humidities are expected.

In anticipation, the U.S. Forest Service is prepositioning additional firefighting resources in southwestern Colorado.  Three single engine air tankers and an air attack plane have been ordered for the Durango Air Tanker Base, and a helitack crew for the Archuleta County Airport. Seven additional fire engines, three fire prevention patrols and miscellaneous supervisory overhead resources will also be prepositioned at the San Juan National Forest’s three ranger districts in Bayfield, Dolores and Pagosa Springs.

Other federal agency resources include a Bureau of Land Management helitack crew stationed out of the Montezuma County Airport, and the Mesa Verde National Park Type 3 helicopter and helitack crew at the Old Fort Lewis Campus south of Hesperus.