BLM transfers wildland fire engine and boat to local fire department

Dolores Garcia, public affairs specialist

The Bureau of Land Management Arizona (BLM) recently transferred wildland fire equipment to one of its rural wildland firefighting partners in Yuma County. The BLM Arizona’s Colorado River District transferred a type 6 wildland firefighting engine and boat to the Martinez Lake Fire Department to support the local response to wildfire in Yuma County.   

Three people standing off to the side of a bright yellow fire engine.
Inspecting the engine. From right to left: Martinez Lake Fire District President Charley Bush, Fire Chief Jodi Little, BLM Fire Management Officer RobRoy Williams.

BLM Arizona’s Yuma Field Office Assistant Field Manager, Ray Castro, joined Colorado River District Fire Management Officer RobRoy Williams in presenting the keys to Martinez Lake Fire Department Chief Jodi Little and Fire District President Charley Bush on June 7, 2023.   

A person sitting at a desk focused on paperwork.
Martinez Lake Fire Chief Little signs the engine transfer paperwork.

Bush said, “On behalf of the department and residents of Martinez Lake, thank you! This engine will be a great addition and will help enhance our firefighting capabilities and provide better service for our area.” 

The engine and boat were made available to Martinez Lake Fire Department under the BLM’s Rural Fire Readiness (RFR) program, which provides equipment to qualifying departments that cooperate with BLM and assist with fire response on public lands. Community partnerships between the BLM and local fire departments are crucial to wildfire response on private, state, and federal lands affecting grazing, recreation, wildlife, and other values important to local economies.  

Six people standing in front of a BLM truck and a boat.
The Colorado River District Office transfers a boat to the Martinez Lake Fire Department in Yuma County, Arizona.

The RFR program serves as a mechanism to transfer BLM firefighting equipment and provide funding to partners to increase safety and reduce suppression response times. These equipment transfers enhance our already strong cooperative working relationship, as it brings more fire resources to the fight regardless of jurisdiction.  

Two people wearing shirts that say Martinez Lake Fire on the back are looking inside a fire truck engine that has its side doors open.
Martinez Lake Fire Engine Captain Omar Flores and Firefighter Richie Rubi inspect the engine.

The BLM accepts RFR applications from local fire departments for available vehicles, equipment, and supplies, and transfers excess items to local fire departments in the months ahead of the next fire season. 

Three fire personnel stand next to a yellow fire engine. The end of the engine's water hose is submerged in a lake.
Martinez Lake and BLM firefighters train on drafting to fill the water tank on the engine.

For more information on the RFR program, contact your local BLM office and visit the BLM Rural Fire Readiness webpage at: https://www.blm.gov/programs/public-safety-and-fire/rural-fire-readiness-program 

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