BATON ROUGE – Seven Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry (LDAF) wildland firefighters are in Woodward, Oklahoma to assist in fighting wildfires there.
“An extended drought plus high winds in that part of the region are contributing to the fires in Oklahoma. Our firefighters are battling blazes on nearly 800,000 acres. There’s been at least one death, twenty homes destroyed and thousands of livestock at risk,” said LDAF Commissioner Mike Strain, D.V.M. Strain added that mild conditions in Louisiana at this time are allowing the LDAF personnel to assist in Oklahoma. “We know all too well the need for assistance during emergency situations. Anytime we can support a neighboring state, we will do so,” said Strain.
The firefighters were selected from different parts of the state to ensure that no area would be left unmanned. The LDAF is working in conjunction with a mutual aid agreement called the South Central Forest Fire Compact in which firefighter personnel and equipment can be requested by other states within the compact that are in need. Those states include: Arkansas, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Texas.
The wildland firefighters will be in Oklahoma approximately three weeks.