An effort to develop a better fire shelter following the deaths of 19 wildland firefighters in Arizona six years ago has failed.
Officials at the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise in a decision on Wednesday said the current fire shelter developed in 2002 will remain in use.
The Arizona firefighters had deployed that same type of shelter in 2013, but still died in the blaze. Last year, however, two wildland firefighters on two separate wildfires used their fire shelters and survived without burn injuries, officials said.
The National Wildfire Coordinating Group's executive board determined the current shelter combines the most practical amount of protection balanced against weight, bulk and durability.
The U.S. "Forest Service conducted an exhaustive search of materials and designs, working with 23 different entities that produced hundreds of different materials and combinations," officials said.
Researchers were tasked to create a shelter that could repel radiant heat, which is felt standing near flames, and convective heat, felt if you put a hand into the fire.