Fire experts from across the country looking to Florida for help

OLUSTEE, Fla. — Baker County was center stage as dozens of firefighters from as far away as Washington state traveled to see how Florida prevents wildfires.

A prescribed burn is one of Florida Forest Service’s most vital tools.

“It's all about safety. Safety of our fire fighters. Safety of our communities and protecting people's property and homes as well,” said John Fish, Florida Forest Service fire chief.

The group was made up of wildfire experts from different parts of the country.

“It so happens that you all in Florida are extremely innovative and extremely effective at what you do,” said Nick Goulette, executive director of the Watershed Research and Training Center in California.

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Florida leads the country when it comes to prescribed burns, burning 2.5 million acres last year alone.

Goulette said the yearly meetings about fire preparation efforts is an opportunity to learn the best ideas.

“The idea of getting people together is to facilitate them in building relationships with each other so that they stay invested and continue to share and move the best ideas around the country throughout the year,” said Goulette.

Fish said last year, more than 562 firefighters were sent to other parts of the country help with wildfires.