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Arizona Guard fights massive wildfire

From Arizona National Guard and Arizona Governor's Office reports

PHOENIX (6/7/11) - The Arizona National Guard has been supporting fire crews at the Wallow Fire with three 2500 gallon fuel tankers and their associated crews since Monday.

"The mission of the Arizona National Guard is two-fold, to support federal operations and just as importantly, to support domestic operations and emergencies," said Army Maj. Gen. Hugo E. Salazar, adjutant general.

"Our Guardsmen are ready to provide additional support as requested by fire crews engaged with wildfires in Arizona," said Salazar.

The fuel tankers are scheduled to provide support for an indefinite time.

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer on Monday signed a Declaration of Emergency in response to the wildfires raging in Apache and Greenlee Counties.

This declaration releases $200,000 from the Governor's Emergency Funds (via the State General Fund) to pay for emergency responses and recovery expenses for damage resulting from the fires.

The funding will support costs not covered by the federal fire management assistance grant, as well as recovery efforts following suppression of the fire.

The Governor's Emergency Declaration also authorizes the Adjutant General to mobilize the Arizona National Guard as necessary to protect life and property.

In addition, the Governor has called for activation of the State Emergency Operations Center, as of 8 a.m. Tuesday.

The State Emergency Operations Center provides coordination and direction for all state emergency response activities to assist in the protection of life and property within Arizona.

Gov. Brewer is authorized under state statute to declare a state of emergency. The declaration directs the following actions:

  • Declare that a State of Emergency exists in Apache and Greenlee Counties due to the Wallow fire, effective May 29, 2011 and continuing.
  • Direct that the sum of $200,000 from the general fund be made available to the Director of the Arizona Division of Emergency Management to be expended in accordance with A.R.S. 35-192, A.A.C. R8-2-301 to 321, and Executive Order 79-4.
  • Direct that the State of Arizona Emergency Response and Recovery Plan be used to direct and control state and other assets and authorize the Director of the Arizona Division of Emergency Management to coordinate state assets.
  • Authorize the Adjutant General to mobilize and call to activate all or such part of the Arizona National Guard as is determined necessary to assist in the protection of life and property throughout the State.

To date, all costs associated with response to the Wallow Fire are being supported by the federal fire management assistance grant.