More than 100 Washington firefighters are being deployed to the deadly and devastating wildfires in California.
Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz mobilized 106 firefighters and 20 engines from the Washington Department of Natural Resources. The crews are headed to Chico, CA to help battle the Camp Fire, which has burned more than 173 square miles and destroyed more than 6,700 structures as of Sunday night.
The DNR said Saturday local fire districts are dispatching an additional 15 engines to California, comprising about 93 firefighters. The Snoqualmie Fire Department is sending a fire engine and crew with members from Snoqualmie, Duvall, and Fall City. A crew from Lacey is also headed south.
"With our wildfire year all but over, I’m grateful our firefighters are willing to once again jump to help our neighbors in need," Franz tweeted.
Three significant wildfires are burning in California right now, from north of San Francisco to Southern California. 31 people have died in the devastation.
At least 29 of the deaths are due to the Camp Fire, burning in Northern California's Butte County. The fire erupted 80 miles north of Sacramento and quadrupled overnight to nearly 110 square miles.
"A whole town was wiped out in 24 hours," said Rocklin Police officer Jon Gee. "It's crazy."
Saturday morning, crews packed gear into several rigs at MClane-Black Lake fire department in Thurston County, before hitting the road.
"We're glad to go and help when we can," said chief Steve North.
Not far away, members from departments comprising the South Puget Sound Strike Team #3 gathered at a rest stop.
"We've had times where California firefighters have come up and helped us too, so it does give us an opportunity for the states to help each other out," said Eastside Fire and Rescue battalion chief Dave McDaniel.
Both teams said they are being deployed to Southern California.