High Fire Danger in Hawaii
Severely dry conditions in Hawaii have led national wildlife refuges there to gear up with additional firefighters and equipment. Any fire start could potentially grow to a large fire, consuming years of reforestation efforts.
Firefighters from Idaho and Washington refuges were based at Hakalau Forest National Wildlife Refuge on Hawaii’s Big Island. The refuge is home to several endangered forest birds that rely on the rare vegetation scattered across the area, which ranges in elevation from 2,000 to 6,000 feet.
The Service firefighters provided fireline supervision, training, and equipment maintenance for 2 weeks in late February. They also coordinated with key partners such as the State of Hawaii, National Park Service (NPS), and the U.S. Army on developing interagency operations for large fires.
Although firefighters are prepositioned to hot, dry spots every year, this marked the first time the Service called more pre-season firefighters to Hawaii.
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