Firefighter returns from US

Firefighter returns from US

8 September 2006

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New Zealand — One of the New Zealand firefighters sent to America to help fight the wildfires ripping through the country arrives back in Christchurch today.

National Rural Fire Authority Manager John Barnes has spent the last 35 days in the north-west. He was based at the USA National Interagency fire Centre in Boise, Idaho.

“The north-west states were experiencing a wildland fire season which may well rival their devastating 2000, 2002 and 2003 fire seasons.

Soon after his arrival in America, Mr Barnes was instrumental in requesting 50 managers be sent over from Australia and New Zealand to help deal with the blazes which have been burning in northern California, Washington State, Oregon, Idaho and Montana. The 425 uncontrolled fires have destroyed some 30,000 hectares of land.


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