FLOWER MOUND, Texas (CBSFW.COM) – Firefighters from Arlington, Ft. Worth, Lewisville, Flower Mound, Allen and other surrounding cities have been deployed to assist firefighters on the West Coast as they work to contain wildfires ravaging Oregon, Washington and California.
Six of the largest wildfires to happen ever in the state of California have happened this year.
In Flower Mound, a crew of three and their brush truck left Station 6, without knowing what city they were heading to or what their mission is just yet.
“Two and a half days is likely how long it will take them to arrive,” said Brandon Barth, Flower Mound Fire Department’s Emergency Management Officer. “The states around them are experiencing their own wildfires so their ability to directly help California is kind of limited.”
They’re one of 40 teams from Texas heading west.
“It could be anything from structural protection, direct fire attack, to extinguishing hot spots and preventing flare ups, it can be a multitude of things once they arrive…the more pressing issue is to get them in route,” Barth said.
The three men are all volunteers with training in wild land fighting and are prepared for California’s terrain.
Brody Eakin will serve as the Engine Boss for this trip. He says this is his first time to be deployed out of state, but couldn’t be more proud to represent North Texas.
“We go on this because we like, we like the adventure part of it, but we also want to go out there, we have a job to do so. It’s just an extension of the job we do here,” Eakin said.
They say leaving on September 11th had a special meaning, a reminder that in times of need, we come together.
“People helping people, you know we always see Texans helping Texans in a lot of our intrastate deployments, but on these interstate deployments its’s Americans helping Americans, and we are glad and proud to be able to do that,” Barth said.
The men at Flower Mound Fire Department have been told they’ll probably be deployed about two weeks, but damage assessments will determine the length of their trip.