Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Bentley to send more helicopters to help in Gulf Shores/Orange Beach wildfire

Gulf Shores- Mayor Robert Craft announced Monday that the state will be sending more aircraft to aid with the wildfire in Gulf State Park.

Craft received a call from the governor's office late in the afternoon promising two helicopters, a Blackhawk with a 750-gallon bucket  and a chinook with a 2,000-gallon bucket,  to drop more water on the blaze.

"Local officials are working around the clock to contain this fire, and I am hopeful they will be successful,” Bentley said in a news release. “The fires have not affected the beaches of Gulf Shores or Orange Beach.

"I want to encourage people who have plans to travel to the Gulf for the upcoming holiday to continue with their vacation plans.”

The current State Trooper helicopter being used can only deliver a 350-gallon load.

The state gave no timeline for the arrival of the aircraft, Craft said.

 "I could not get a confirmation as to the estimated time that these assets will behere, but they are absolutely on the way," Craft said.

Currently, the fire has burned over 400 acres. The blaze is contained, accordingto Gulf Shores Deputy Fire Chief Keith Martin.

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