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Bonneville County prepares for wildfire season with new protection plan

They’re called WUI’s (woo-ee), and they’re a key part of Bonneville county’s new community wildfire protection plan. WUI stands for Wild land Urban Interface and they’re areas within Bonneville county where potentially flammable fields and forests come right up against urban development.

“So they (WUI’s) identify areas that are most at risk,” said Chief David Coffey of the Idaho Falls Fire Department. “It gives us a plan of attack. We know where they are ahead of time.”

The new plan is the first update in nearly six years. Bonneville county has grown substantially since then and the old emergency plans failed to include new development. They also weren’t as comprehensive or in-depth.

In hopes of educating the public and giving public feedback on the new emergency plan, Bonneville county is holding two meetings. One today Tuesday, June 23, at the Idaho Falls Library from 7-8 pm. The second meeting will be held Wednesday, June 24, at the Swan Valley fire station, also from 7-8 pm.

“They’re mostly educational meetings for the general public about what the community wildfire protection plan is,” said Tom Lenderink, the director of Bonneville County’s emergency management team. “It teaches what WUI zones are about, and what it means if you live in one.”

Several people who helped create the emergency management plan will be at the meetings to answer any questions.

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