Issues obtaining information on the Mine Draw Fire in Custer
We have had issues getting information on the Mine Draw Fire in Custer, S.D.
and the policy states, "it is the policy of federal and state agencies to provide news media access to incidents including wild land fires, prescribed fires, and wildland fire-use fires."
It also states, "federal and state agencies are required to provide equitable and maximum news media access to wild land fire incidents."
Though we have reached out to numerous parties, we have not been given access.
Normally, a public information officer from a local agency is assigned to coordinate through the Great Plains Interagency Dispatch Center, but the information for this fire is being controlled by the office of the Governor.
We also reached out to numerous local fire authorities in the area, but they have all referred us to the governor's office. Some agencies said they also have little to no information, and others said they do not want to "step on the toes" of state and federal authorities.
We also sent emails and texts to the governor's office to ask why the Governor's office has control of this information, when previous fires have had a spokesperson on site to provide information to the public and media.
At this time, the governor's office has not responded to our questions.
As of 2:00 PM MT on Thursday, the fire has been 100% contained.