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More Utah Fire Crews Join California Battles

Cameron Gull

About a dozen more Utah fire engines and crews are now in California. Matthew McFarland is an information officer with Unified Fire Authority. He says since these crews have mostly structure fire training they are not likely to be on front fire lines.

"Something structure engines could be very adept at is identifying which ones are most savable and which ones could be savable with a little bit of work. And then which ones might be a total write-off because their homeowners haven't done any proactive work to make their homes more defensible."

The additional personnel and equipment could be there for up to three weeks, according to McFarland.

Jurisdictions and agencies sending fire engines include Salt Lake City, Unified Fire Authority, Provo, West Valley, West Jordan, South Jordan, Draper and Pleasant Grove.

The additional engines raise Utah's total deployment of fire engines to California to 31.

Bob Nelson is a graduate of the University of Utah with a BA in mass communications. He began his radio career at KUER in 1978 when it was still in Kingsbury Hall. That’s also where he met his wife, Maria Shilaos, in 1981. Bob left KUER for commercial radio where he worked for 25 years, and he is thrilled to be back at KUER. Bob and his family are part of an explorer group, fondly known as The Hordes and Masses, which has been seeking out ghost towns and little-known places in Utah for more than twenty years.
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