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Petty Officer 2nd Class Shawn Butsch, a firefighter at U.S. Naval Station Rota, Spain, supports a water hose as a base fire crew extinguishes a blaze off base Aug. 1.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Shawn Butsch, a firefighter at U.S. Naval Station Rota, Spain, supports a water hose as a base fire crew extinguishes a blaze off base Aug. 1. (Courtesy of U.S. Navy)

Petty Officer 2nd Class Shawn Butsch, a firefighter at U.S. Naval Station Rota, Spain, supports a water hose as a base fire crew extinguishes a blaze off base Aug. 1.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Shawn Butsch, a firefighter at U.S. Naval Station Rota, Spain, supports a water hose as a base fire crew extinguishes a blaze off base Aug. 1. (Courtesy of U.S. Navy)

Navy firefighters from U.S. Naval Station Rota, Spain combat a brush fire in the nieghboring town of Rota.

Navy firefighters from U.S. Naval Station Rota, Spain combat a brush fire in the nieghboring town of Rota. (Courtesy of U.S. Navy)

Firefighters from U.S. Naval Station Rota (Spain) Fire Department extinguished two large brush fires off base recently. The cause of the fires is unknown, but according to fire officials, there is a predictable increase in brush fires during the summer in Rota when temperatures are high and conditions are dry, said Lt. Corey Barker, base spokesman.

The town of Rota, directly outside the main gate of the base, relies on Navy fire and rescue protection.

The first blaze Navy firefighters responded to July 28 was outside the perimeter road. It was extinguished within 45 minutes.

The second fire, on Aug. 1, burned in a vacant lot across from the Gulf gas station in Rota. Firefighters worked in the 100-plus degree heat and choking white smoke to extinguish the flames before they could spread to a field where several horses in a pen were in an obvious panic, Barker said.

This year, the fire department has responded to more than 190 calls, about 40 of which were off base.

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