LOCAL NEWS

Utah Firefighters In Australia Assisting Brush Fire Battle

Dec 26, 2019, 9:22 AM
Firemen prepare as a bushfire approaches homes on the outskirts of the town of Bargo on December 21...
Firemen prepare as a bushfire approaches homes on the outskirts of the town of Bargo on December 21, 2019 in Sydney, Australia. A catastrophic fire danger warning has been issued for the greater Sydney region, the Illawarra and southern ranges as hot, windy conditions continue to hamper firefighting efforts across NSW. NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian declared a state of emergency on Thursday, the second state of emergency declared in NSW since the start of the bushfire season. (Photo by David Gray/Getty Images)
(Photo by David Gray/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Utah firefighters are among the U.S. federal and state personnel who have traveled to Australia to help stop brush fires that have prompted a national emergency, officials said.

Five federal agencies and 10 states including Utah have sent 21 firefighters to Australia, The Deseret News reported Tuesday.

The state of emergency was declared due to a massive fire near Sydney, with other national park and mountain fires expected to fuse as brush fires continue to spread across 1,563 square miles (4,048 square kilometers) of Australia, authorities said.

The fires have been fueled by 25 mph (40 kph) winds amid temperatures reaching 113 degrees (45 degrees Celsius), officials said.

The United States, Mexico and Canada have a cooperative, reciprocal agreement in place to help Australia, said Craig Glazier, deputy director of fire and aviation for the the U.S. Forest Service Intermountain Region in Ogden.

There have been two mobilizations of U.S. firefighters this month and Glazier said he planned to submit nominations for a third deployment Monday.

“Those guys are in bad shape in Australia,” Glazier said.

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Utah Firefighters In Australia Assisting Brush Fire Battle