Drone prevents firefighters from doing job

Drones
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For the second day in a row, a drone halted firefighters from doing their job at the scene of the Trailhead Fire.

On Wednesday, eight firefighting tankers had to land because of a drone flying above the wildfire. Crews lost about 30 minutes of firefighting time that could have been used to drop more retardant on the flames.

Daniel Berlant, a representative with Cal Fire, said if people fly drones into the airspace of a wildfire, they're putting lives at risk. 

"Its a very important message and a critical message for hobby drone operators," Berlant said. "If you fly, we can't."

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The United States Department of Agriculture also issued a press release saying flying drones or unmanned aircraft systems or [UAS] within or near wildfires without permission could cause injury or death to firefighters and hamper their ability to protect lives, property and natural resources. Often, fire managers may suspend aerial firefighting until the unauthorized drone leaves the area, which allows the fire to grow larger.