U.S. government assists in fight against Chilean forest fires

At the request of the government of Chile, the U.S. government is mobilizing support for the tireless firefighters and others who are working to combat Chile’s wildfires.

The U.S. Agency for International Development, through its office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/OFDA), is donating $100,000 USD to the non-governmental organization Caritas Chile for the local procurement and delivery of firefighting equipment, such as chainsaws.

Also, the U.S. Forest Service and USAID/OFDA are deploying an emergency response team of wildfire technical experts to Chile for several weeks to share their expertise.

U.S. Embassy employees and their families are showing their appreciation for the brave work of those battling the blazes by donating food and medical supplies to the Decimocuarta Compañía del Cuerpo de Bomberos de Santiago, Tuesday afternoon.

The United States and Chile collaborate closely in emergency planning and response to fires, earthquakes, floods, and tsunamis.  For many years, USAID/OFDA has supported a number of initiatives in Chile to increase the capacity of government officials, local communities, and NGOs to prepare for and respond to emergencies. Currently, USAID/OFDA, Catholic Relief Services through Caritas Chile, and CONAF are implementing the Community-Based Wildfire Prevention in Chile’s Wildland-Urban Interface program.  Our militaries routinely train together on natural disaster preparedness and response.

The U.S. government will continue to assist Chile’s excellent emergency personnel in their work to keep people safe in the face of natural disasters.

For those interested in assisting in the fight against the Chilean wildfires, please contact the following organizations.  The Embassy does not endorse or recommend a particular organization, but rather hopes to provide assistance to those who want to donate by compiling a list of organizations working to combat the fires.