Update on wildfire resources responding to Hurricane Sandy recovery

Since our report yesterday about the wildfire resources being sent to the east coast to assist with the recovery from the impacts of Hurricane Sandy, there has been an increase in the numbers heading east. Yesterday there were 2 Incident Management Teams and 7 crews or portions of crews being mobilized. Today 5 incident management teams and 11 wildfire suppression crews or portions of crews, for a total of more than 200 personnel, are ordered, staged in, or en route to New York, Washington, DC, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Massachusetts. One of the IMTeams is a National Incident Management Organization, or NIMO team. (We need to come up with a better name for these teams. “National Incident Management Organization Team” is almost as bad a term as “fire for resource benefits”.)

The firefighters ordered, en route, staged, or on scene include:

  • Two interagency hotshot crews, one 20-person Type 2 wildfire suppression hand crew, one 10-person saw crew, and one short Type 2 incident management team (Pisarek) are staged at or en route to Republic Airport, Farmingdale, New York (Long Island). The IMTeam will be operating a supply depot.
  • Two 20-person Type 2 wildfire suppression handcrews are enroute to Washington, DC. A short Type 2 incident management team has been ordered for Washington, DC.
  • Three 20-person Type 2 wildfire suppression handcrews en route to Pennsylvania. A short Type 2 IMTeam has been ordered for Annville, Pennsylvania.
  • The Southwest National Incident Management Organization team (Houseman) has been sent to Lakehurst, New Jersey. Dan Kleinman will be the Incident Commander.
  • Two 20-person Type 2 wildfire suppression hand crews and one short Type 2 incident management team (Grant) staged at Fort Deven, Massachusetts.

I expect that as responders switch from rescue to recovery and are able to gain access to the impacted areas through blocked roads to access the damage, there will be increasing demands for crews and perhaps IMTeams.