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Drills For Wildfire Preparedness

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Sonora, CA — Visitors and nearby residents may see and hear plenty of firefighting activity going on in the Stanislaus National Forest Friday but no fire as it will be only a drill.

There will be five mock fires on the Mi-Wok Ranger District from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Two will take place off of 2N63/South Fork Road and three along 3N24. Called the “Deer Fire,” it will include a five acre area for firefighters to hone their skills. Forest Service spokesperson Rebecca Garcia explains, “It will allow for the construction of a fireline, practice the use of fire tools, deploy hose and test communication lines with dispatch.”

The training will not involve real flames and resources responding to this drill will not use lights or sirens. As a reminder, Garcia notes that campers can help reduce the number of fires by drowning the flames with water and stir the ashes until cold to the touch. Abandoned campfires, which are illegal, consistently rank as the number one cause of human-sparked fires in the state and country, according to forest officials.