For the tenth time this year, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has authorized federal funds to help Colorado battle a wildfire threatening lives and property. FEMA approved assistance tonight for the Dierich fire in Mesa County. Earlier today, the agency announced a fire management assistance grant to help state firefighting efforts for the Hayman fire.
FEMA has already provided more fire assistance grants in the state this season than in the preceding eight years combined. FEMA Director Joe M. Allbaugh approved the state's latest request for federal fire management assistance when it became clear that the blaze was a threat to homes and businesses.
"Firefighters across Colorado have their hands full protecting lives and property threatened by wildfires," Allbaugh said. "FEMA applauds the firefighters' dedication and hard work, and pledges continued support of their mission to protect the public."
In addition to the Dierich fire, FEMA fire management assistance has been authorized in Colorado this year for the Snaking fire on April 23; the Cuerna Verde fire on May 1; the Black Mountain fire on May 5; the Schoonover fire on May 23; the Iron Mountain fire on June 2; the Trinidad Complex fire on June 3; the Ute Pass fire on June 7; the Coal Seam fire on June 8; and the Hayman fire earlier today, June 9.
Federal fire management assistance is made available by FEMA to manage, mitigate and control fires that threaten to cause a major disaster. The assistance covers eligible state firefighting costs, including expenses for field camps; equipment use, repair and replacement; tools, materials and supplies; and mobilization and demobilization activities.
Between 1994 and 2001, FEMA firefighting assistance was provided in Colorado for the Wake Complex, South Canyon and Roxborough Complex fires in 1994; the Buffalo Creek fire in 1996; the Bobcat Gulch, Hi Meadow and Eldorado fires in 2000; and the Armageddon fire in 2001.