The El Paso County Sheriff’s Office filled its new deputy fire warden position ahead of what’s expected to be a busy fire season across southern Colorado.
The office hired recently retired Colorado Springs Fire Battalion Chief James Schanel. He will advise the sheriff as the top fire official in unincorporated parts of the county.
"My responsibility is to make sure he (Sheriff Bill Elder) is compliant with state statutes regarding wildland fire," Schanel said. "There’s specific language in those statutes, and my job will be to make sure that those are implemented in the field."
Schanel will provide control, oversight and command with other local agencies that call for assistance.