The Nevada Division of Forestry hosted a delegation from the Turkmenistan Ministry of Interior fire services last week. Eight visitors, who included fire chiefs from each of the country’s five provinces, and two Russian language interpreters, came to Nevada.
This visit was part of an on-going exchange, which is sponsored and funded by the Nevada National Guard’s State Partnership Program. The exchange was a follow-up to an exchange in Turkmenistan in April, where instructors from the Division of Forestry, Sierra Fire Protection District, Airport Authority Fire Department and the National Guard taught wildland-urban interface operations.
“The Turkmen spent the week learning about various aspects of fire fighting operations in Nevada,” said Michael Klug, fire management officer with the Nevada Division of Forestry.
The training sessions started with a visit to the State Emergency Operations Center, where they learned how various state agencies work together during an emergency. At Washoe Lake, they saw a demonstration of the Division of Forestry’s helicopter operations, including bucket drops.
On a visit to the division’s fire station in Carson City, the group learned about wildland engine operations. They also spent a day at Incline where the North Lake Tahoe Fire Protection District provided them with training on firefighting with foam. Sierra Pacific Power Company provided a session on firefighter safety at electrical emergencies and Southwest Gas provided training on extinguishing natural gas fires. They also visited the Sierra Front Interagency Dispatch where they learned about the interagency cooperation between federal and state wildland fire organizations.
“In addition to the formal training, they attended three barbeques, where they were able to meet Nevadans in a more informal atmosphere,” Klug said. “They attended a barbecue at the State EOC. The Turkmen were impressed when the Director and Deputy Director of the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, and the State Forester and Deputy State Forester, had lunch and visited with lower ranking employees. They said that this is not common practice in their county.”