LOUISIANA — Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry (LDAF) Commissioner Mike Strain, D.V.M., has ordered all flags to be flown at half-staff at LDAF facilities throughout the state until July 5, 2013 following the deaths of 19 Arizona wildland firefighters.
"The loss of these firefighters in Arizona is devastating news. Wildland fires are some of the most intense, dangerous and unpredictable to battle because they spread quickly. While reports indicate the fire started as a result of lightning, it's important to remember that our forests must be protected and we thank the men and women who risk their lives to prevent the spread of these fires whether they are the result of mother nature's wrath or man-made," said Strain.
The wildfire, which is considered the deadliest in state history, is not contained at all, according to Brewer's office and other authorities. About 400 ground personnel and 100 incident-management staff are working to control it.