VALE – As part of a new program, the Vale Fire and Ambulance Department recently received a fire engine, upgrading their wildland firefighting capabilities.  

The Rural Fire Readiness program is designed to provide equipment to local wildland firefighting agencies at no cost, the BLM said in a press release.

The Vale agency, which covers some 500 square miles, got to pick up the 2002 Freightliner fire engine. It carries about 860 gallons of water and as many as four firefighters.

“This is a win-win situation for BLM and the city of Vale. It will only enhance our already strong cooperative working relationship as it brings more fire resources to the fight regardless of jurisdiction,” said Brent Meisinger, BLM Rural Fire Readiness program lead.

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The BLM sees partnerships as crucial to effective wildfire response on federal, state and private lands. In the program, local fire departments and rangeland fire protection associations can apply to the BLM for available vehicles, supplies and equipment. 

The applicant agency must serve a rural community, have a cooperative fire response agreement with the BLM, help with BLM fire response when needed and to be in close proximity to BLM-administered lands.  

Have a news tip? Reporter Joe Siess: [email protected] or 541-473-3377.

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