Oakland, CA -- The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has again moved swiftly to help California fight another wildfire outbreak, authorizing the use of federal funds in two hours of being contacted by the state of the threat posed by the Croy fire to populated areas in Santa Clara County.
FEMA Director Joe M. Allbaugh approved the state's latest request for federal fire management assistance today after it was reported that the blaze posed an imminent threat to 350 homes near Morgan Hill, California, and mandatory evacuations of more than 150 people. The 2,500-acre fire was burning on Croy Road west of Uvas Road at the time of the request.
"It's important for firefighters in California and elsewhere to know that they will continue to have the support of the federal government in their battles to save lives and protect property during this extremely dangerous fire season," Allbaugh said.
The action marks the 12th time this year that FEMA firefighting assistance has been made available to the state. The aid was previously authorized for the Williams fire in Los Angeles County on Sept. 24, the Sierra fire in Sacramento County on Sept. 19, Leona fire in Los Angeles County and the Squirrel fire in Shasta County on Sept. 4, the Pines fire in San Diego County on July 30, the Deer fire in Kern County on July 22; the Louisiana fire in San Bernardino County on June 27; the Blue Cut fire in San Bernardino County on June 17; the Copper fire in Los Angeles
County on June 6; the Antonio fire in Orange County on May 14; and the Gavilan fire in San Diego County on February 11.
Federal fire management assistance is provided through the President's Disaster Relief Fund and made available by FEMA to assist in fighting fires that threaten to cause a major disaster. The assistance pays 75 percent of a state's eligible firefighting costs under an approved grant for managing, mitigating and controlling designated fires.
Eligible state firefighting costs covered by the aid can include expenses for field camps; equipment use, repair and replacement; tools, materials and supplies; and mobilization and demobilization activities.
FEMA is the federal agency that coordinates response efforts to federally declared disasters. The agency's 10 regional offices work directly with states to plan for and respond to disasters, develop mitigation programs and meet public needs when disasters happen. FEMA Region IX serves the states of Arizona, California, Hawaii and Nevada, as well as the territories of American Samoa and Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the Republic of the Marshall Islands and the Federated States of Micronesia.