Vancouver Fire Department makes adjustments in extra busy fire s - KPTV - FOX 12

Vancouver Fire Department makes adjustments in extra busy fire season

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To deal with an extra busy fire season, the Vancouver Fire Department calls in additional crews and is conducting extra wild land fire training.

“This isn’t something we have seen for quite a while,” said Deputy Fire Chief Dan Olson. “It’s excessively dry. It’s been dry for a long time, so we have to respond accordingly.”

Olson said the fire department is seeing an additional 20 calls a day due to the extra dry conditions.

On July 4 and July 8, there was so much fire activity that it depleted resources, leaving just one or two crews available throughout the city, he said.

In those cases, Olson said the department called in off-duty firefighters and requested mutual aid from other agencies.

Every day, Vancouver Fire officials consult the Northwest Coordination Center’s fire potential forecast and recent fire activity to determine if they need to bring in additional crews and staff brush fire and water tender trucks.

Olson said they often add extra firefighters between the hours of 2 p.m. and 7 p.m., which fire risk is the highest.

“That’s when the woodland and the vegetation is the driest and any ignition source that goes into that dry environment -  in May, June, you might get a fire,” he said. “Today, you’re going to get a fire.”

A recreational burn ban remains in effect in the city due to the dry conditions.

Olson urged Vancouver residents to follow to be careful discarding cigarettes and to avoid backyard burning.

“The risk so high because the vegetation is so dry. It’s human behavior that’s causing the fires,” he said.

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