NewsCovering Colorado


More is better ⎯ SOCO certifying more wildland firefighters

@CSFDPIO Muscoco Fire
Posted at 8:27 PM, Feb 26, 2024
and last updated 2024-02-26 23:47:18-05

EL PASO COUNTY, Colo. — The number of certified wildland firefighters in El Paso County just got a boost.

The SOCO Wildland Fire Team held its annual field training day off Highway 115 just south of Cheyenne Mountain.

SOCO is a recently formed collaboration between a half dozen fire departments at the south end of El Paso County.

If a wildfire starts, SOCO activates to add extra wildland firefighters quickly.

Several dozen new volunteers have been in the classroom for training over the first weekends of February.

For their final Saturday, they got hands-on experience and skills testing.

“We trained together on water ops, hand crew ops, chainsaw ops, and we're going to put it all together this afternoon in a mock exercise to see how we're doing,” said SOCO Superintendent Shane Coyne. “And we'll learn from that. It'll make us better for the fire season.”

Fire bosses remind us that the wildfire threat in Colorado is year-round.

Right now, one of the highest threats is out on the plains where grass is dry and flames spread quickly, especially on windy days.


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