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Florida Forest Service Sends 26 to Battle Texas Wildfire

Hidden Pines Fire
Posted at 5:30 PM, Oct 19, 2015
and last updated 2015-10-19 14:17:59-04

TALLAHASSEE, FL (WTXL) -- The Florida Forest Service (FFS) is sending firefighters to help battle the Hidden Pines fire in Bastrop County, Texas.

The fire has burned 4,600 acres and destroyed more than 20 homes, according to FFS wildlife mitigation expert Todd Schroeder. FFS is sending 26 personnel and six bulldozers to Texas to help contain the fire.

The Texas Forest Service says the Florida team is on standby, but will be part of the initial attack team if other fires pop up in the area. As of Sunday night, the Hidden Pines fire was 60% contained.

The FFS has helped put out fires this summer in California, Oregon, Washington and Idaho.

"We try to support them when we can - when our fire danger is down, like it is right now," Schroeder said. "When we need them, we kind of look to them and hope that they return the favor, which that's normally what happens."

This year, the FFS has sent nearly 550 firefighters and personnel to assist wildfire suppression and management efforts in 11 other states.