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What's In The Fire Retardant That's Dropped On Idaho Wildfires?

Frankie Barnhill
Boise State Public Radio
Listener Mary Reiman (center) learns about fire retardant at the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise.

August in Idaho means the last month of summer vacation, county fairs, camping and … oh yeah, wildfires. Here's just a few of the wildfire stories Boise State Public Radio covered this month.

In the latest episode of Wanna Know Idaho, we asked you to send us your questions on wildfires. Podcast host Frankie Barnhill met up with inquisitive listener Mary Reiman to answer her burning (get it?) questions:

"What's in fire retardant? Are there any long-term effects or consequences after it's applied? How much does it cost?" - Mary Reiman

To answer these questions, Frankie and Mary took a field trip to the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise. While they were there, they got to tour a 1958 plane converted for firefighting, investigated what pilots do in their off season, and learned what that pink-red retardant is really made of.

Les Dixon and Mary Reiman pose for a selfie on board a 1958 Canadian tankerplane. We are all about selfies-in-cool-places here at Wanna Know Idaho!

Thanks to Wanna Know Idaho listener Mary Reiman for her great questions. So, what question should we look into next? That's up to YOU! Let us know what you're curious about below; you might end up featured on our September episode.


If you haven't subscribed to Wanna Know Idaho yet, find us on iTunes or wherever you get your pods.

P.S. Thanks to Boise music project ‘Up is the Down is The’ for the awesome theme music. Check the project out on Spotify and Bandcamp.

For more 'Wanna Know Idaho' content,follow host Frankie Barnhill on Twitter 

Copyright 2018 Boise State Public Radio

Frankie Barnhill is the Senior Producer of Idaho Matters, Boise State Public Radio's daily show and podcast. She's always interested in hearing surprising and enlightening stories about life in the West. Have an idea for Idaho Matters? Drop her a line!