Three Canby Fire District firefighters and a heavy brush engine were among the many Oregon fire agencies called by Gov. Kate Brown to assist California with the three major forest fires currently raging in our neighboring state.
The fires have killed at least 23 people and displaced hundreds of thousands more. According to Canby Fire District Div. Chief Todd Gary, Canby was dispatched to the Camp Fire in northern California, which has devastated the city of Paradise, destroying over 6,700 buildings (most of them homes) and over 105,000 acres of forest.
Canby was sent as part of a task force that includes Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue, Hoodland Fire and Clackamas Fire. Oregon dispatched a total of 16 task forces from across the state to help California and its residents.
The Oregon State Fire Marshal makes the request to counties for specific types of apparatus to make up the teams that will report, Gary explained. Canby’s crew was dispatched Friday at noon.
“This is the third time we have been sent to assist California,” Gary said. “We went once last year. I spent most of last December in southern California.”
Firefighters in Paradise are working shifts of 24 hours on, 24 off, and sleeping in temporary camps made up of tents or trailers. The Camp Fire is 20 percent contained as of this morning.