Government Shutdown May Hinder Rim Fire Cleanup

One of the worst wildfires in California’s history continues to burn in Yosemite National Park, where employees will be furloughed following the government failure to pass a budget, reports Fox News.

The Rim Fire has burned more than 257,000 acres and is 92 percent contained.

The shutdown could hamper efforts to mop up hot spots and stabilize scorched soils because it will mean firefighters and emergency response teams will be low on cash.

“It will be difficult for teams to purchase supplies and equipment,” said Jerry Snyder, public affairs officer for the Stanislaus National Forest. “Permission can be granted, but there isn’t a budget to purchase necessary materials beyond what they already have on hand.”

The shutdown will also be a financial blow for Yosemite National Park and private businesses nearby, which suffered severe economic losses this summer because of the fire. With the Rim Fire nearly out and major roads reopened, visitors were finally returning to Yosemite for camping and the park’s fall foliage display.

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