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Texas A&M Forest Service opens single engine air tanker base in Alpine

The base will assist with wildfire response across the state due to warm, dry conditions this week.
Credit: Texas A&M Forest Service

ALPINE, Texas — The Texas A&M Forest Service has opened a single engine air tanker base in Alpine. 

This is in response due to the warm, dry conditions expected this week. The base will also help assist with wildfire response across the state. 

With persistent droughts, cured grasses and above normal temperatures coming this week, there will be an increased chance of fire activity from the Big Bend region to the Midland/Odessa area on April 6 and 7. 

Aviation resources are used to support suppression efforts on the ground and aiding in the protection of structures and other resources. 

“This year, we’ve utilized single engine air tankers for response in areas with increased wildfire activity,” said Jared Karns, Texas A&M Forest Service Planning and Preparedness Department Head. “There is potential for a large, fast-moving fire to occur and we want to be prepared by having aircraft in state, ready to respond.” 

People must take personal responsibility in protecting themselves and their families from these wildfires. State resources are prepositioned in areas of concern to respond to wildfire activity. 

“It is the responsibility of each individual resident to prepare their home for wildfires,” said Kari Hines, Texas A&M Forest Service Firewise Coordinator. “Every year, there are hundreds of homes that survive wildfires unaided and allow firefighters to operate safely to protect them. And this is due to the landscaping and building choices made long before the fire ever started.”