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Mother Lode Firefighters Help In So Cal Fire Effort

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The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection Tuolumne Calaveras Unit has sent 15 fire engines and numerous firefighters down south to fight the devastating fires burning out of control in Southern California.

About two dozen fire supervisors and department personnel have also reported to the fire lines to help with miscellaneous support duties, Hubbard said. this morning.

The CDF has also canceled all firefighter scheduled days off and the department has stepped up staffing and station coverage in both Tuolumne and Calaveras counties due to the high fire danger in the Foothills.

“When ever you have a large amount of fires like this anywhere in the state, you need all the personnel you can get,” Hubbard explained. “Everyone has to come in and do their part. That´s really what´s happening right now. Local jurisdictions all over the state are helping CDF in the suppression of these fire.”

To help fill the gap in fire coverage in Tuolumne County, Hubbard said, area volunteers firefighters have “stepped up to the plate” and are staffing engines for the department while other crews are in Southern California.

Jerry Snyder with the U.S. Forest Service said the Stanislaus National Forest has sent more than 100 firefighters, and support personnel to the fires in Southern California, including the Hot Shots crews from Sonora and Groveland, as well as four fire engines and a helicopter.

Volunteers are staffing fire stations in Twain Harte, the CDF station in Sonora, the Mono Village station in east Sonora and the Blanchard in the Lake Don Pedro area. One water tender is also being staffed by volunteers.

“We appreciate their efforts to protect us as well as the employers who have let them off to come and work these next couple days as staff is out of the area,” Hubbard said.

Fire officials are also asking the community in assisting the fire safety effort by not starting any fires in the region.”We want people to be very cautious if they have equipment outdoors. Don´t use it in the afternoon hours,” Hubbard requested. “So be real cautious .”

She added if people have started using their fireplaces, not to dump ashes anywhere near dry grasses.

A flag warning for high fire danger has been extended through today

Officials say many area of the Central state and foothills face increased fire risk because of very low humidity and dry offshore winds.The National Weather Service says winds as strong as 35 miles per hour are possible.

Unseasonably hot temperatures today could break some records, or at least come close. Forecasters are saying high temps in the Mother Lode could hit the 90 degree range today. Fire danger in the foothills continues to be extremely high.