Tag: US Forest Service

Volunteers Needed for Annual Meadows Edge Clean-Up Day

Big Bear, CA, April 14, 2016 – The second annual Meadows Edge Clean Up Day is scheduled for Saturday, May 7, 2016, at the popular day use picnic area from 9am to 1pm. Volunteers of all ages are needed to help with the general clean up and prepare this popular family area for the 2016 summer season.   Registration is required at MountainsFoundation. Volunteers can participate with family and friends and make it FUN! Free lunch and tools are provided.  In addition, an opportunity drawing will be available to win prizes. “We’re looking forward to the 2016 event to pull together...

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US Forest Service First Fee Free Day Of 2016

Big Bear, CA, January 16, 2016 – In honor of Martin Luther King Jr’s dedication and forward thinking the US Forest Service would like to extend an invitation to everyone on Monday, January 18, for this year’s first “Fee Free Day” on the national forests in Southern California. The National Forest Adventure Pass will not be required for visitors recreating in the San Bernardino, Angeles, Cleveland and Los Padres National Forests. By waiving fees, The Forest Service is working to ensure as many visitors as possible have the opportunity to experience the great outdoors and take advantage of the many recreational activities America’s...

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Inland Empire Man Convicted of Threatening to Kill Federal Officer

Big Bear, CA November 2, 2015 – An Inland Empire man, Richard Latka, 56, of Hemet, was convicted of threatening to kill a Federal Forest Service Officer who came to the man’s home to ask about trash dumped in the San Bernardino National Forest.  According to the evidence, the Officer went to Latka’s residence in October 2014 to investigate.  The officer encountered Latka who reacted angrily and ran toward the officer with clenched fists. Believing that Latka intended to hit him, the officer drew his Taser gun. Latka stopped running but continued screaming at the officer. The officer tried to remove himself from the situation by getting into his car, but Latka continued to scream at the officer and pounded on the window of the law enforcement vehicle with his fist. The officer drove away, but Latka followed in his own car, yelling “next time you’re dead.” “Threatening the lives of law enforcement officers will not be tolerated,” said United States Attorney Eileen M. Decker. The officer in this case took many steps to de-escalate the situation and prevent it from getting worse. If not for the officer’s professionalism and calm, the defendant’s conduct could have become more violent and dangerous.  Sentencing is set for January 25, 2016, at which time Latka will face a statutory maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison, a three-year period of supervised release, and...

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BBFD Curbside Chipping Program is a Great Success

Big Bear, CA, October 23, 2015 – The Big Bear Fire Department would like thank the entire Big Bear Valley for their efforts keeping our community healthy by creating defensible space utilizing the Curbside Chipping Program which has now officially ended for the season. 1,215 community members participated in the program and more than 387 tons of flammable vegetation was chipped and diverted from landfill. Funding for the Chipping program is provided through Big Bear Fire Department, CAL FIRE, and a grant from the U.S. Forest Service through the California Fire Safe...

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P-3 Aerial Firefighting Fleet To Be Revived

San Bernardino Mountains, CA, February 7, 2015 – Orion Aerial Firefighters is a company dedicated to return the P-3 Orion aircraft to aerial firefighting service. It is currently raising funds to bring these aircraft back to the fleet of air tankers. Dale Head, CEO of Orion Aerial Firefighters, says, “The US Forest service has a shortage of large air tankers, which dangerously reduces its firefighting capabilities. Pilots feel that the maneuverability and relatively short wingspan of the P-3 allows it to get to places other airtankers just cannot.” In 2011, after 20 years in service as the backbone of the US Forest Service’s large airtanker fleet for fighting wildland fires such as we’ve experienced here in the San Bernardino Mountains, the USFS cancelled the contract for six P-3 airtankers due to concern over maintenance practices by Aero Union, the owner of the P-3 fleet. Orion Aerial Firefighters has assembled a unique team of engineers, maintenance experts, and pilots who intend to return these aircraft to aerial firefighting. Their familiarity with these particular aircraft put Orion AFF in a unique position to return this P-3 fleet to service within a year of funding. If you would like to help return the fleet of P-3 Orion large airtankers as a critical component of the US Forest Service’s national firefighting fleet, got to...

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