Arizona firefighters to help battle California wildfires

- Arizona firefighters are experienced in battling fires in rugged terrain and windy conditions. Things can be difficult in tough situations, especially when homes and other buildings are in the line of danger.

Strong winds are causing the Thomas Fire to spread rapidly and it has already burned 150 buildings.

The Daisy Mountain Fire Department has sent some help and on Tuesday night, they warned residents about the wildfire risk.

More than 50,000 acres have burned in California so far as the Thomas Fire rips through Ventura County.

"With a fire like this, such a dynamic, fast moving situation, it can easily overwhelm local resources in the initial attack" said Shuman Ventura.

The rare December wildfire forced nearly 30,000 residents to evacuate. They've been grabbing what they can and trying to get to safety.

"Photos of them old photos, that can never be replaced, and some insurance policies," said Husam Hishmeh, who was fleeing the area. "When the wind pushes, it just goes."

Here at home, the Daisy Mountain Fire Department has already deployed one firefighter to assist with more ready to go if called on.  The wind is causing the same problems a northern California fire caused two months ago.  Brent Fenton was helping to battle that one.

"Those wind driven fires, those fires can move at an astronomical rate.. in Napa valley, the fire was covering the size of a football field in about three seconds," he said.

The fires in California serve as a warning to residents in Arizona: keep the perimeter around your home clear. It serves as a defensible space.

"When we say defensible space, we mean that we want to see the brush cleared away, make sure there's no debris up against the side of the home, and if there are trees, we want to see them trimmed up," said Fenton.

Daisy Mountain Fire crews say something like this definitely could happen here in Arizona. Everything that didn't burn during our drier months is ripe to do it now if there was a spark. That's why it's so important to get that area around your house cleared if you live near vegetation.

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