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Florida Forest Service Sends 16 Florida firefighters to help battle Texas Wildfire

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Posted at 2:40 PM, Oct 16, 2015
and last updated 2015-10-16 14:40:00-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam announced Friday that the Florida Forest Service is sending 16 wildland firefighters to assist wildfire suppression efforts on the Hidden Pines Fire in Bastrop County, Texas. The fire has burned more than 4,300 acres, destroying nine homes and threatening hundreds more.

“Florida Forest Service wildland firefighters are an elite group of selfless public servants committed to the protection of life, property and natural resources. This commitment extends beyond Florida’s borders as we work to provide support to our partners across the country,” said Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam.

16 Florida Forest Service wildland firefighters from North Florida will join other firefighters on Friday in Texas. They will use a range of firefighting equipment, including bulldozers, to contain the wildfire by creating a fire break or fire line around the fire perimeter. The Hidden Pines Fire is currently only 25-percent contained.

So far this year, the Florida Forest Service has sent nearly 550 firefighters and personnel to assist wildfire suppression and management efforts in 11 other states.

The Florida Forest Service is a division of the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. It manages more than one million acres of public forest land while protecting 26 million acres of homes, forestland and natural resources from the devastating effects of wildfire.