Day One Containment.
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The time has come to rethink our fire attack strategy in California. We need to build a fire fighting force that is capable of containing wild land fires in their infancy. The number of catastrophically destructive fires has increased dramatically over the last decade. The resources required to manage these fires grows exponentially in the initial hours after ignition.
We are calling for a dramatic increase in our air attack capacity. More Very Large Air Tankers (VLATs) should be made available. At least 25 VLATs need to be on the ready across the western states at all times during the fire season. They should be augmented by an appropriate number of smaller air tankers, helicopters, and observation aircraft. These forces should be stationed in multiple locations allowing for aircraft to be on scene within 90 minutes.
We need to empower our firefighting force to react aggressively with a minimum amount of bureaucracy to directly suppress all wild fires, containing them on the first day.
Once containment has been established a more deliberative process can be used to determine the fate of the fire.
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