As wildland fire increases in the western United States, firefighters from around the country are helping. The Minnesota Incident Command System (MNICS) sent two 20-person crews to Idaho to await assignment to a fire.
In the early morning hours of July 22, 2014, several agencies coordinated rescue operations in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Seven injuries were reported and those people have been removed from the area. Wilderness patrols are in the area assessing damage and removing downed trees.
Minnesota sends two 20-person wildland firefighting crews to Washington
MNICS crew members load firefighting gear onto the National Interagency Fire Center jet on their way to the Chiwaukum Creek Fire in Washington
The Minnesota Incident Command System (MNICS) sent two 20-person initial attack firefighting crews to the Chiwaukum Creek Fire near Levenworth, Washington.
The Chiwaukum Creek Fire is approximately 6,600 acres and is threatening hundreds of homes. There are road closures and evacuations in the area.
The Minnesota crews joined two crews from Wisconsin and one from Michigan’s Upper Peninsula at the Duluth Mobilization Center July 18, 2014. The National Interagency Fire Center set a jet to transport the crews from Duluth to Washington.
Minnesota’s initial attack crews are interagency groups of trained wildland firefighters. Members are from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR), the US Forest Service (USFS) Superior and Chippewa National forests, the US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), Voyageurs’ National Park, and the Bureau of Indian Affairs from Leech Lake, Red Lake, Grand Portage, and Fond du Lac agencies.
Initial attack crews serve up to two weeks.
Minnesota is also supporting firefighting efforts with personnel and equipment in Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico and Oregon.
Minnesota Incident Command System (MNICS)
The mission of MNICS is to coordinate, educate and implement the Incident Command System to support fire and all risk incidents in Minnesota and nationwide.
MNICS is an interagency group with state and federal partners that cooperate in management of wildfire and all risk incidents and provide standard procedures, practices and information to facilitate, coordinate and support actions on incidents in Minnesota. The organization is governed by a Task Force of agency leads.
Member agencies are the US Forest Service (USFS), Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA), Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR), US Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), National Park Service (NPS), and the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (HSEM).
Minnesota Interagency Fire Center (MIFC)
MIFC houses the Northeast Interagency Fire Cache and MNICS staff. MIFC serves as a hub for mobilization of wildfire and emergency resources. Services include:
- All Risk Emergency Management and Support
- Dispatch Coordination Center
- Fire Behavior Support
- Fire Cache
- Radio Shop
- Rural Fire Department Support
- Symbols Program
- Training Program
- Wildfire Aviation Management
- Information Management
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