Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Statement on the Palomino Valley Fire & BLM’s lack of a good evacuation plan

Protect Mustangs

PVC Fire July 2, 2012 across dirt road from the holding facility (Photo © Taylor Jones)
Statement from Anne Novak, executive director of Protect Mustangs
We are very grateful to the firefighters for their hard work to stop a potential catastrophe. We hope all the residents are safe in the area.
People across the country were so worried when we released the photos taken by Taylor James on our website (http://protectmustangs.org/?p=1852 ) and through social media. The public cares deeply about America’s mustangs–especially all the mares and foals who have just been rounded up from Jackson Mountain.
With all the fires across the West this summer, we hope the BLM has up to date evacuation plans for each wild horse holding facility.
We request the BLM to provide us with a copy of their emergency evacuation plan for more than 2,000 indigenous wild horses to be held at the Palomino Valley Center.
We are asking the BLM to install a 45 minute evacuation plan in case of an emergency–for each wild horse holding facility. Once the BLM takes the mustangs off the land they are responsible for their care.
BLM’s alleged 24 hour evacuation plan for Palomino Valley is not practical. What if these horses and staffers needed to evacuate quickly due to fire?
We would like the BLM to provide us with a copy of their emergency evacuation plan for the wild horses held at the Palomino Valley Center.
According to Taylor James, the photographer on site, the mustangs were already panicking at 7:10  p.m. with smoke coming into their pens.
We are especially concerned for the welfare of the pregnant mares and tiny foals after the intense smoke exposure while they were trapped in pens. In the wild they would run away with their families. Tonight they were at risk because they have been rounded up, separated from their families and held captive.

Links of interest:
July 3, 2012 1:15 p.m. Ironwood fire is 90% contained. News 4 reports http://www.mynews4.com/mostpopular/story/Ironwood-Fire-is-50-contained/dry6RBxk502RkA-w6YCc5Q.cspx

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