Colorado sends wildfire resources to other western states

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DENVER -- Colorado continues to send much of its wildfire resources to the west, as the fire danger level is at its highest point nationally since 2007.

“Obviously, with all the support we’re giving to California and the Northwest, we have very bare shelves,” Rocky Mountain Fire cache warehouse materials handler Matt Mixon said.

The warehouse is at about 50 percent capacity as they fill up a 53-foot trailer once a week to send west.

“I want to say we hold right around 15,000 lengths of fire hose, but right now we’ve got maybe 800," Mixon said.

There are 11 national fire caches throughout the country, filled with tools, portable shelters and fire hoses.

“Everything here can go to another cache and it belongs to them, or we get their stuff and it belongs to us,” Mixon said. “We just move it back and forth.”

So the resources are shared nationally, and the Bureau of Land Management Colorado says while it might look empty here, it makes sure there's enough at home.

“We had a good example last week when we had a lot of fires break out in northwest Colorado. We had the resources on the ground to hook up those fires very quickly,” BLM Colorado communications director Steven Hall said.

It’s a system that doesn’t necessarily care who the resources belong to, as long as they are put to good use.

“Obviously, wildfire doesn’t really care about political boundaries and we try to take the same approach at the national perspective,” Hall said.

The BLM said approximately 650 resources and more than 300 people have been mobilized outside of the area. But it is confident there are enough resources should any big wildfires start in Colorado.

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