The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) this week authorized the use of federal funds from the Nation’s Disaster Relief Fund to help Texas, Oklahoma and New Mexico fight 17 fires burning in those three states.
David Paulison, Acting FEMA director, said the three states’ requests for federal fire management assistance were approved as fires destroyed hundreds of homes and threatened thousands more.
“These fire management assistance grants are critical and necessary steps towards enabling state and local governments fight these fires,” said Paulison. “We are committed to getting our firefighters the funds they need to extinguish dangerous fires that threaten lives and property.”
The authorization makes FEMA funding available to pay 75 percent of the state’s eligible firefighting costs under an approved grant specifically designed for managing, mitigating and controlling any fire that threatens to become a major disaster.
The following fires were approved for Fire Management Assistance Grants:
* Carbon Fire in Eastland County, Texas, which has already burned more than 10,000 acres.
* Ringgold Fire in Montague and Clay counties, Texas , which has burned more than 2,200 acres and destroyed more than 27 homes.
* Kennedale Fire, Tarrant County, Texas, which killed one person and has burned more than 300 acres and threatened more than 100 homes.
* Callahan County Fire, Texas, which has burned more than 1,000 acres and destroyed more than 60 homes near Cross Plains, Texas.
* Hughes County Fire Complex, Hughes and Seminole counties, Oklahoma, which has burned more than 2,600 acres.
* Depew Fire Complex in Creek County, Oklahoma, which has burned more than a thousand acres and threatened 1,450 homes in Bristow , Okla.
* Wainwright Fire Complex in Muskogee County, Oklahoma, which has burned more than 4,000 acres and threatened nearly 12,000 homes in Muskogee , Okla.
* Shamrock Fire Complex in Creek County, Oklahoma, which threatened more than 300 homes in Drumright and Shamrock, Okla.
* Bethel Acres Fire in Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma, which has burned more than 600 acres and threatened 50 homes in Bethel , Okla.
* Cashion Fire Complex in Kingfisher County, Oklahoma, which has burned more than 12,800 acres and threatened more than 100 homes in Cashion, Okla.
* Guthrie Fire in Logan County, Oklahoma, which has burned more than 1,000 acres and threatened approximately 100 homes in Guthrie, Okla.
* Sapulpa Fire Complex in Creek County, Oklahoma, which has burned more than 800 acres and threatened more than 6,500 homes near Kellyville, Okla.
* Prague Fire Complex in Lincoln and Okfuskee counties, Oklahoma, which has burned more than 640 acres and threatened 2,650 homes in eight communities.
* 63rd Street Fire in Oklahoma County, Oklahoma, which has burned some 700 acres near Oklahoma City. The fire threatened 85 homes outside the city.
* Eastern Oklahoma County Fire Complex, Oklahoma , which has destroyed 12 homes and threatened 680 residents.
* Achille Fire Complex, Bryan County, Oklahoma, which is burning on each side of Achille, Okla. Ten homes have been destroyed and another 165 are threatened.
* Hobbs Fire in Lea County, New Mexico, which has burned more than 35,000 acres and forced more than 10,000 people to evacuate. The fire threatened Hobbs and Tatum, N.M.
“The entire federal family continues to monitor the fires in New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas extremely closely,” Paulison said. “The National Interagency Fire Center in Boise is supporting the operational needs of all states. FEMA will continue to provide coordination and support at the regional and national level as needed.”
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.
Eligible costs covered by the aid can include expenses for field camps; equipment use, repair and replacement; tools, materials and supplies; sheltering; and mobilization and demobilization activities.
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