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Federal agencies to work on ways to help firefighters recover from on-the-job trauma, provide early intervention

BOISE, Idaho – The U.S. Department of the Interior will create a health and wellness program for firefighters in the wild and increase spending on firefighting efforts by $ 103 million in fiscal year 2022, Secretary Deb Haaland said Friday. To see also : Researchers develop antimicrobial, plant-based food package designed to replace plastic: Starch-based fibers improve protection and reduce damage.

The additional funding, announced by Haaland at the National Interagency Fire Center, comes as part of $ 1.5 billion in last year’s $ 1.2 trillion infrastructure law signed by President Joe Biden to address wildfires, which also directed the creation of mental health services. for wild firefighters.

Most of the funds, $ 80.9 million, will be used to expand and accelerate fuel management work in fire-prone areas, and will help the department reach 2 million acres more than last year, an increase of about 30 percent, Interior reports. Another $ 19.4 million will be spent on rehabilitating areas after they burn.

Programs are now critical as climate change causes fires to be frequent and intense, Haaland said.

“One thing is perfectly clear: that climate change will continue to increase fires in the West and that we must continue to invest in preserving our ecosystems,” she said. “We must and will continue to be in harmony, because the reality is that today … these are ‘fire years’, no longer ‘fire seasons’.

Fire impacts

“Hotter, drier conditions are causing more extreme fire behavior, and the increased frequency of fires in urban areas is affecting more homes, businesses and communities each year. On the same subject : East Baton Rouge Parish Receives $ 1 Million for New Mental Health Initiative.”

The Mental Health and Wellness Program was also a product of the Infrastructure Act, which forced the Home Office and the U.S. Department of Agriculture to create programs to address mental health needs, including the treatment of posttraumatic stress disorder.

The health program will employ people to respond to critical incidents that require stress management. It will also add healthcare capacity in four in-house offices – Indian Affairs, Land Management, Fish and Wildlife Service and National Parks Service – to set up a new system of trauma support services focused on early intervention.

Officials said the program will increase and better coordinate existing approaches to help firefighters stay resilient and recover from workplace trauma. They expect millions of dollars in funding from the bilateral Infrastructure Act, but were unable to provide the exact amount of funding at Friday’s briefing.

“We have more support to expand the capacity we already have in the agencies, and we are very grateful for that,” said Grant Beebe, fire director of the NIFC’s Office of Land Management. “So (we’re) not setting up a whole new program, but we’re actually strengthening a program that we’ve had some experience with and a lot of success with our firefighters.”

In a statement before the release, Haaland said the goal of “providing trauma-based mental health care is critical.”

Addressing stress

“Firefighters in the wild work in extremely stressful environments that can have a significant impact on their overall health and well-being, as well as those they love,” she said. This may interest you : 100 million people in America are burdened with health debts.

The USDA Forest Service employs most federal firefighters, but about 5,000 work for interior offices. Federal firefighters in the wild do not receive some of the health benefits that are common to those in municipal departments.

The Internal Affairs Department will also announce $ 3.1 million for a joint fire science program in collaboration with the USDA. The funds will support research on the mental health of firefighters, landscape resilience and methods of preventing wildfires.

Some of the funds will also go to creating a tool for mapping fire and mitigation hazards, which Interior is developing together with the USDA and the State Foresters Association.

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What is a Type 1 fire crew?

A Type 1 firefighter leads a small group (usually no more than seven members) and is responsible for their safety in the wild and prescribed fire incidents. FFT1 controls resources at the FFT2 level and reports to the crew chief with one resource or another assigned supervisor.

What is a type 2 crew? Firefighter Type 2 serves manual crew, motor crew or helicopter crew, performing firefighting and fuel management tasks in the most adverse climatic, fuel and terrain conditions.

What is the difference between a Type 1 and Type 2 hotshot crew?

The hot crew will also have at least two senior or lead firefighters certified at the FFT1 level. Crew experience: 80% of crew members have at least one year of experience. While the requirement for a Type 2 IA crew is only 60%.

What is a Type 1 hotshot crew?

Hotshot Crews is a Type 1 hand crew. They are the most experienced, fit and highly trained of all Type 2 or Type 2 hand crews for the initial attack. The Office of Indian Affairs hosts seven Interagency Hotshot Crews (IHC).

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How often do Hotshots work?

Schedule. Wildland firefighters can work 14 days in a row (called a roll) with a 16-hour day and preferably up to three days of travel before and after the official 14th. Night shifts and longer shifts of 16-24 hours are possible, depending on the fire and the area you are in. are present but not very common.

What do off-season hotspots do? During the off-season, firefighters in nature can still work full time as firefighters. However, seasonal firefighters work in the wild during the fire season and can collect unemployment, travel, work other jobs, or receive additional training out of season.

What months do wildland firefighters work?

Seasonal crews operate during the peak period of fires during the year, usually from April to October. Training can only be conducted occasionally at seasonal center locations. Crews are building a fire line to help contain and control wilderness fires and carry out initial attacks and clear fires.

How many hours do Hotshots work?

Basic Fitness Requirements During the fire season, fast 16-hour days are expected to work for two weeks in a row, and these long hours are spent hiking on steep and difficult terrain while carrying tools, food and water on their backs to build fire lines between fire and community.

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How many hotshot crews are in the US?

As of 2018, there are 113 fast crews across the country.

What is a fast type 1 crew? Hotshot Crews is a Type 1 hand crew. They are the most experienced, fit and highly trained of all Type 2 or Type 2 hand crews for the initial attack. The Office of Indian Affairs hosts seven Interagency Hotshot Crews (IHC).

How many hotshot crews are there in California?

A spokesman for the Forest Service told KNTV that California has a target of 44 fast crews, but only 31 are full-time at the moment.

How many hotshot crews are in the nation?

The Land Management Office has 11 inter-agency rapid crews stationed in Alaska, California, Colorado, Idaho, Mississippi, Nevada, Oregon and Utah. The Hotshot crew consists of 20 specially trained firefighters. They provide an organized, mobile and skilled workforce for all phases of wildfire management.

Is CAL FIRE a good career?

Working for CalFire is a safe and rewarding career. CalFire offers many opportunities for improvement. The training is excellent and the equipment is always top notch.

Is it hard to work for CAL FIRE? A good start to the fire service A good place to start your firefighting career, but you will be overwhelmed, underpaid (compared to other fire agencies) and management doesn’t care about your family. Extreme divorce rate, very busy and most shifts without rest. The leadership is very incompetent.

How much does CAL FIRE pay per hour?

Job titleShe’s crying
Salaries of firefighters / EMT – 3 registered salaries$ 18 / hour
Firefighter / EMT salaries – 2 salaries reported$ 16 / hour
Salaries of firefighters – 2 salaries reported$ 18 / hour
Forestry aid salaries – 1 registered salary$ 22 / hour

Does CAL FIRE pay well?

Salary ranges from $ 48,000 to $ 74,796 per year in addition to benefits, paid leave and much more!

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