US wildland firefighting force urged to get vaccinated

Idaho's firefighting bills come to $17 million
Posted at 4:23 PM, May 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-19 09:33:44-04

BOISE, Idaho — With a potentially ferocious wildfire season threatening to ignite across the western U.S., a push is on to persuade wildland firefighters to get vaccinated against COVID-19.

Republican Idaho Gov. Brad Little said Tuesday that lives could be lost if frontline firefighters get sidelined with the illness. The U.S. Bureau of Land Management held a virtual town hall last week that included an emergency room doctor urging crews to get the vaccine.

At least two states, Texas and Alaska, are requiring firefighters to get a rapid test for the coronavirus before being allowed into the state to fight fires.