Nevada, California senators ask for upgrades to firefighting tankers

Nevada and California U.S. senators have asked Air Force Secretary Barbara Barrett to upgrade the Nevada Air National Guard’s fleet of firefighting tankers.

Sens. Catherine Cortez Masto and Jacky Rosen were joined by California’s Dianne Feinstein and Kamala Harris — all Democrats — in seeking eight state-of-the-art C130J aircraft to improve the Guard’s readiness and ability to fight wildfires.

In their letter, they argued that upgrading the Guard’s fleet, “would have a substantial impact on the Nevada Air National Guard’s readiness and firefighting capabilities in both Nevada and California.”

The letter points out that wildfires have become more common occurrences in both states and the rest of the west. They cited statements by U.S. Forest Service chief Vicki Christiansen last June that the threat of wildfire is no longer confined to a fire season but is year round.


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