SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif., January 6, 2020 – We are proud to share that USDA Forest Service Fire Captain, Dave Soldavini, from the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit (LTBMU) is currently assigned to Australia as part of an interagency group helping with fire suppression efforts.

LTBMU Fire Captain Dave Soldavini, holds a baby kangaroo aka a “Joey” that was rescued from the devastating wildfires in Australia. Photo credit: USDA Forest Service.

Soldavini is part of the third group of fire resources the U.S. has deployed to Australia. On Dec. 30, 2019, the Forest Service and the U.S. Department of the Interior sent 44 personnel to Australia. An additional 21 personnel were mobilized on Jan. 4, 2020, and will replace a previous group of American firefighters mobilized in early December.

After flying to Brisbane, Soldavini had 24 hours to acclimate and then participated in an all-day briefing that covered the current situation, expected fire behavior and operations standards and practices given by the Australian Rural Fire Service.

Soldavini will be deployed throughout the month of January and may serve numerous roles including engine boss, task force leader, division supervisor and operations section chief.