Sacramento Bee, John Hidahl, El Dorado County Board of Supervisors (Dist. #1), October 12, 2018
After three of California’s biggest wildfires ever, this year will likely mark the worst fire season in state history. As first responders and firefighters are stretched beyond capacity, we need to focus on ways to improve response time and gather real-time information. One way is to make sure that emergency responders have the most technically advanced tools available. It’s up to each department to select the best tools; next-generation helmets for some, rapid extinguishing technologies for others. Drones are another tool to consider; with trained pilots, unmanned drones can operate in high temperatures, fly at night and in heavy smoke and get to the scene quicker than a fire engine.