County strike team returning home from Mariposa brush fire

August 24, 2001|By MARIO RENTERÍA, Staff Writer

Imperial Valley firefighters called to Mariposa County to battle a brush fire have been released by the Governor's Office of Emergency Services and will be coming home.

Imperial County's "strike team one," made up of 21 firefighters from the El Centro, Calexico, Brawley, Calipatria and Imperial County fire departments, was providing structure protection at the "Creek Fire" in Mariposa County, making sure flames were kept from homes.

Imperial Valley firefighters were asked to join in battling the blaze just after 4 a.m. Tuesday.

El Centro Fire Chief Charles Beard, in charge of organizing the local strike teams, said " strike team one" is expected home today.

"Strike team two," made up of firefighters from the Holtville, Naval Air Facility El Centro and city of Yuma fire departments, along with crews from Calipatria and Centinela state prisons, remained on alert during the peak of the blaze but was not called to the "Creek Fire."


A press release from the Governor's Office of Emergency Services stated with the fires nearing full containment, the 261 engines will depart in parades of five, scattered throughout the next several days, returning to the 51 counties from which they came.

Of the nine large wildfires that started this month in California, it was the "Creek Fire," 85 percent contained as of this morning, that dominated local government and state OES mutual aid resources.

For six days, the "Creek Fire" roared across Tuolumne and Mariposa counties, burning 11,500 acres and threatening homes in numerous communities.

Staff Writer Mario Rentería can be reached at 337-3435.

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