Austin Local News
AFD Gearing Up for Potentially Dangerous Fire Season
The Austin fire Department's Wildfire Division has sent a team out to the Davis Mountains in West Texas to help battle six wildfires that have touched off recently. So far that blaze has eaten up nearly 7000 acres of land.
The help AFD is giving to crews in West Texas is also somewhat of a hands-on training for firefighters who may have to battle similar fires in Central Texas. AFD Battalion Chief Josh Portie says they've already been called out several times around the Austin-area to put out fires that could've potentially grown out of control.
"Here in Central Texas, we're looking at trends of being a busy season," Portie says. "For us to already to be out five times this year just on wildfires, you know, that's pretty doggone busy."
The threat of wildfire around Austin is expected to continue throughout the year, although Portie says the trend doesn't look quite as bad as it did in 2011 when the Bastrop Complex Fire scorched more than 35,000 acres, destroyed more than 1600 homes, and killed two people.