Pilots from various agencies involved in aerial fire fighting gathered at Ramona Airport on Wednesday, June 10, to plan for the coming fire season. Pilots and other officials from CalFire, U.S. Department of Forestry, the Sheriff’s Department, San Diego Police, San Diego Fire, and the U.S. Navy, as well as helicopter pilots from local television stations discussed air operations, radio frequencies, and safety guidelines as part of their annual training.
The emphasis, according to CalFire Battalion Chief Ray Chaney, is planning and safety. He said things get pretty hectic during aerial operations fighting wildfires; therefore it’s important for all the pilots to know the procedures, and especially those relating to safety – their own while flying and that of the public.
At an afternoon news conference, County Supervisor Dianne Jacob commended the agencies for their interagency cooperation and taking a proactive stance, “We are better prepared this year then we were in 2003,” she said.
Ramona Airport, where the CalFire Ramona Air Attack Base is located, is one of eight San Diego County Airports.