Arizona sends fire crews to help with California wildfires

A home burns Nov. 8, 2018, as the Camp Fire rages through Paradise, California. Tens of thousands of people fled a fast-moving wildfire Thursday in Northern California, some clutching babies and pets as they abandoned vehicles and struck out on foot ahead of the flames that forced the evacuation of an entire town.

Fire crews from Arizona are being dispatched to help fight raging wildfires blazing across California. 

In an email, the Arizona Department of Forestry and Fire Management said it responded earlier Friday morning to requests to send engines and personnel to California.

The department said it first sent 11 engines with around 40 to 50 personnel, but later received requests for an additional 30 engines.

The Arizona engines and personnel are headed for South Ops, a big command center in Riverside, California.

The department said it is likely that some will head north where the Camp fire is burning in Butte County; the rest remain in the south, acting as backup for the local fire departments. The Hill and Woolsey fires have burned thousands of acres in Ventura and Los Angeles counties, respectively. 

Five people are confirmed dead as a result of the Camp fire,  Butte County Sheriff’s Office officials said. However, the total injuries or deaths are not yet known.

Engines and personnel also are being sent from other fire agencies from across Arizona including Peoria Fire, Buckeye, Summit Fire Department, Fry Fire District, North County, Ponderosa Fire, Corona de Tucson, and Superstition Fire Department. 

Check back at azcentral.com for updates. 

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