Crews practice aerial wildfire tactics
Aviation aid often key to control local wildfires

A very warm April afternoon is the perfect backdrop for local firefighters to train and learn about fighting fires from above, using helicopters. One by one, choppers picked up 175 gallons from the "water pumpkin," as pilots flew to specific targets. They all simulate putting out flames in hard-to-reach areas, similar to the challenges in Bastrop County two years ago.  They don't put fires out entirely, but they help ground personnel get them to a controllable state so ground crews can get control of a fire scene. All day Saturday, crews from Star Flight, Austin Fire Department, the Texas Forest Service and other local fire departments worked together, so that when real disaster happens, they will be ready.

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