Local firefighters heading to California to help battle wildfires

San Antonio, Schertz, Grey Forest part of task force

By Katrina Webber - Crime Fighters Reporter

SAN ANTONIO - A group of local firefighters is on its way to California to help with efforts to battle huge and deadly wildfires that are scorching that state.

The group, which includes eight members of the San Antonio Fire Department's Wildland Team, met at Bass Pro Shops on Monday morning for the two-day drive out west. 

It's unknown how many firefighters from Schertz and Grey Forest will take part in the operation.

SAFD spokesman Joseph Arrington said the group will head to Southern California, where they will be assigned a specific mission once they arrive.

Arrington said duties initially will include reopening and manning the fire stations in that area.  Those stations right now are closed while all of the personnel are on the fire lines.

California has been ravaged by several wildfires in recent days that have been blamed on at least 31 deaths and destroyed thousands of homes and buildings.

Most of the deaths have been in and around the Northern California city of Paradise.

Tens of thousands of people in Southern California have either lost home or been displaced.

In response to the devastation there, Gov. Greg Abbott announced Sunday that Texas would be lending a helping hand by sending 200 firefighters statewide to join in the firefight.

The local group is among those who have been assigned to the task.

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