USA — They tipped their hats for the efforts of volunteer firefighters across the state.
The Board of Directors of the Lufkin-based Texas Forestry Association, a non-profit trade association representing 3,000 members who grow, manage, harvest and process the states forest resources, recently adopted a resolution recognizing volunteer fire departments and the Texas Forest Service for their service during the prolonged drought and the millions of acres of wildfires that have and continue to occur throughout the state.
The resolution was adopted on Oct. 19 at the organizations annual convention in Galveston.
The members of Texas Forestry Association are extremely grateful to the leadership of these agencies and the Leadership of the Texas Forest Service for the outstanding job they are doing and the job they will be called upon to do until this drought is declared over, said Ron Hufford, executive vice president of Texas Forestry Association. Texas Forestry Association members have been brutally affected by the drought and wildfires. Along with the heavy toll on people and property, these fires have significantly damaged the forestland. Its a tremendous loss for the East Texas timber industry. We applaud the dedication of the men and women of the volunteer fire departments, the Texas Forest Service and outside agencies who have responded to save personal property and lives.
Since this fire season began Nov. 15, 2010, almost 4 million acres have burned across the state, according to the Texas Forest Service.
Although the Texas Forest Country has seen cooler temperatures and some rain in the past couple of weeks, burn bans still exist in Angelina, Cherokee, Houston, Jasper, Nacogdoches, Polk, San Augustine, Tyler and Trinity counties as well as the cities of Lufkin and Hudson.
Because of the continued absence of any substantial rainfall and the current fire danger conditions, the city of Hudson on Thursday extended its ban on outdoor burning by another 30 days. However, Hudson officials said the ban on outdoor cooking has been lifted.
Outdoor cooking using charcoal barbecue pits and propane barbecue pits will be allowed, Hudson Mayor Robert Smith said in a statement. He reminded residents that extreme caution should be used for any type of outside cooking and that they are responsible for any fire getting out of control from cooking.
Hudson residents with questions should contact the city at 875-2358.