Montana sends fire engines to California to help fight wildfires - | News, Weather & Sports in Billings, Montana

Montana sends fire engines to California to help fight wildfires

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RED LODGE, Mont. -

As the wildfires rapidly spread through California, forcing hundreds of thousands of people to evacuate; fire fighters are working tirelessly to contain the flames.

After receiving a request from the state of California for assistance to put out the fires, the state of Montana sends several fire engines and crew members to Los Angeles.

"We had numerous significant fires. Obviously the fires that burned in Napa are going and now these fires in Los Angeles," says Red Lodge Fire Chief Tom Kuntz. "Overall this is going to shape up to be one of the worst fire seasons in U.S. history."

 While firefighting poses many dangers, he ensures that his team is properly equipped and highly trained.

"Now in Montana we have a significant threat from wild land fires and we're fortunate to have a response system of both volunteer and career firefighters who are very well trained in working in the wild land interface which is when the fires are moving into homes," Kuntz adds.

He also says while it is not uncommon for them to send help to neighboring states like Wyoming or Idaho, it is uncommon for them to go to California. This is their second request to head down there this year.

"As everyone knows Montana had a very significant fire season this past summer and we were on the receiving end of a lot of help," said Kuntz. "So, it's an honor to go across the country and be able to reciprocate that assistance when it's needed."