DENVER (AP) -- A state official says Colorado's response to historic flooding was improved by a consolidation of emergency personnel and resulted in life-saving rescues that otherwise may not have happened.
Colorado Department of Public Safety spokesman Lance Clem says firefighters that previously were under Colorado State University helped with at least five civilian rescues. The firefighters are now part of the Division of Fire Prevention and Control under the public safety office because of a law passed last year.
State officials called for the consolidation after criticism about the response to a 2012 deadly wildfire in Jefferson County. The law a reorganized various emergency agencies under the public safety office.
Clem says the unification also allowed the Colorado's emergency operations center to better communicate with troopers on road closures and evacuations.