Inmate fire crews from Nevada are deploying to southern California to help fight the Thomas wildfire.
The Nevada Department of Corrections and Nevada Division of Forestry are deploying six inmate crews, each made up of strictly minimum-security inmates. The crews are coming from the Stewart Camp in Carson City, the Pioche, Ely, and Jean camps in their respective towns, and the Three Lakes Valley Camp, located about 30 miles north of Las Vegas.
A total of 126 inmates -- 105 men and 21 women -- will work the Thomas fire in Ventura, Calif.
“Our hearts go out to those who are affected by the fires in California,” stated NDOC Director James Dzurenda. “Our camp officers and inmate firefighters are trained and prepared for this type of deployment. We are here to help.”
The NDOC runs nine conservation camps in the state with the NDF and the inmates at those camps are trained to fight wildland fires, assist with snow removal and weed removal, handle general cleanup, along with other community efforts.
Over the past three years, all of the conservation camps averaged 460,000 hours working emergency incidents each year.