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Maryland National Guard responds to brush fire at Loch Raven Reservoir

GLEN ARM, Md. (April 24, 2024) – A Maryland Army National Guard helicopter supporting aerial firefighting operations helped suppress an approximately six-acre brush fire in Baltimore County within the Loch Raven watershed.

Civil authorities requested support from the Maryland National Guard and the 29th Expeditionary Combat Aviation Brigade on Tuesday evening after the 2-alarm fire. One UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter with a 660-gallon bucket picked up water from the Loch Raven Reservoir and dropped the water eight times before the fire was under control. The helicopter returned to base without incident.

“Our firefighting capability and response is enhanced by public safety partners who are able react quickly in situations like this brushfire,” said Baltimore County Fire Chief Joanne Rund. “The water drops executed by the Baltimore County Police Aviation Unit and Maryland Army National Guard helicopters were critical to our ability to control and extinguish this fire.”

The MDARNG aircrews regularly conduct helicopter water bucket training to backup aviation crews at Aberdeen Proving Ground due to the frequent potential for range fires on the installation. Each Spring at least three aircrews from the unit conduct training, which prepares Soldiers to respond within hours of the initial request.

“Our Army Aviation Support Facility is always ready to immediately respond to support civil authorities with aviation capability because our aircrews are highly trained,” said Brig. Gen. Andrew Collins, commander of the Maryland Army National Guard. “It is honor to lead such a great group of Soldiers who are dedicated to protecting their state and their nation.”

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