Senate panel to evaluate USFS policy on night flying

Next Wednesday the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior will hold a hearing focusing on the policy of the U.S. Forest Service that currently prohibits firefighting helicopters from operating over a fire at night. The agency has been criticized in recent months after USFS retirees and others said the 160,000-acre Station fire near Los Angeles that killed two LA County firefighters may not have have grown so rapidly on its second day if helicopters had attacked the fire the first night and early on the second day.

Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Burbank) has been very vocal in calling for hearings and as a advocate for using USFS helicopters at night

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Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire.

2 thoughts on “Senate panel to evaluate USFS policy on night flying”

  1. Update (22-May-2010 12:00 PT): To listen to the hearing live, please visit CapitolHearings.Org and click on the link to the right titled Dirksen 124. You will need to have RealPlayer installed to listen/view.

  2. Bill,

    Here’s a copy of the press release from today (May 21st).

    Looks like there will be two panels present.

    It’s very abnormal for a House member (Rep. Schiff) to provide testimony before the Senate without appropriate hearings held in the House. Really weird.

    It should be available to watch live or at least listen to. I’ll provide the link when I get it.


    Press Release

    Wednesday, May 26, 2010

    Interior (Chairwomanman Feinstein)

    Time and Location: 9:30 a.m., Dirksen 124

    Agenda: Examination of the firefighting policy with U.S. Forest Service and U.S. Department of Interior

    Panel 1

    Rep. Adam Schiff, CA-29

    Panel 2

    Tom Tidwell, Chief, U.S. Forest Service
    Tom Harbour, Director of Fire and Aviation Management, U.S. Forest Service
    Mike Poole, Deputy Director, Bureau of Land Management
    Kirk Rowdabaugh, Director, Office of Wildland Fire Coordination, Department of the Interior


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