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Saskatchewan sending 6 more firefighters to help Australia

Firefighters work to contain a fire near Stanford Merthyr, west of Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia, Dec. 3, 2019.
Firefighters work to contain a fire near Stanford Merthyr, west of Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia, Dec. 3, 2019. Darren Pateman / The Canadian Press

Six more wildfire management staff from Saskatchewan are heading to New South Wales, Australia, for 38 days. They’re joining 24 other members for the Canadian Interagency Forest Fire (CIFFC) on this deployment.

This is the second group of Canadians to go help out in northeastern Australia in the past three weeks. On Dec. 3, 21 Canadian firefighters were deployed to New South Wales, including two from Saskatchewan.

READ MORE: Canadian firefighters warmly welcomed in Australia: ‘We have been humbled’

“Having Australia request more support not only shows how bad these wildfires are, it also demonstrates the quality of our staff,” Saskatchewan Public Safety Agency president Marlo Pritchard said in a statement.

“It also exemplifies the fact that Saskatchewan is a province of people that are willing to step up when others are in need.”

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The fire season in eastern Australia is off to an early and severe start. This has resulted in fatalities, property loss and destruction of large areas of New South Wales and Queensland.

READ MORE: Australian PM returns from Hawaii after 2 firefighters die battling wildfires

As a member of the CIFFC, Saskatchewan and other provincial agencies will export firefighting resources to other jurisdictions through mutual aid resource sharing agreements. Canada has called on Australia for help dealing with fires four times since 2015.