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DEC Forest Rangers – Week in Review

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Forest rangers and first responders at cold water training outside of Alfred NY

Town of Alfred, Allegany County
Rescue Training:
 On March 5, Forest Rangers Thaine, Krulish, Kennedy, Robitaille, and Sprague provided instruction in flat ice rescue techniques to fire department volunteers in Allegany County. The event was held at Foster Lake, an Alfred University property. Volunteers from Alfred Station, A.E. Crandall Hook and Ladder, and Andover fire departments, as well as the Allegany County search team, participated and were briefed on ice safety and response considerations. Rangers wore issued cold water rescue suits to demonstrate self-rescue and reach, throw, and ‘go’ rescue methods to retrieve a victim that had fallen through the ice. The volunteers practiced rescuing the Rangers from the water using equipment from their trucks, including extension ladders, ropes, and hoses. Interested volunteers got into the water using exposure suits provided by the Rangers.

DEC rangers and other first responders training on Foster Lake

Brush Burn Ban: From March 16 through May 14, New York’s annual statewide ban prohibiting brush burning is in effect. Since 2009, DEC has enforced the ban to prevent wildfires and protect communities during heightened conditions for wildfires each spring. Backyard fire pits and campfires less than three feet in height and four feet in length, width, or diameter are allowed. Small cooking fires are allowed, but only charcoal or dry, clean, untreated, or unpainted wood can be burned. People should never leave these or any fires unattended and must extinguish them. Burning garbage or leaves is prohibited year-round. For more information about fire safety and prevention, go to DEC’s FIREWISE New York webpage.

Going Hiking ? Be prepared!

Be sure to properly prepare and plan before entering the backcountry. Visit DEC’s Hike Smart NYAdirondack Backcountry Information, and Catskill Backcountry Information webpages for more information.

If a person needs a Forest Ranger, whether it’s for a search and rescue, to report a wildfire, or to report illegal activity on state lands and easements, they should call 833-NYS-RANGERS. If a person needs urgent assistance, they can call 911. To contact a Forest Ranger for information about a specific location, the DEC website has phone numbers for every Ranger listed by region.

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