Palo Alto firefighters and their counterparts throughout the Bay Area are responding to the Thomas Fire that has burned more than 65,000 acres of brush in Ventura County.
Palo Alto's Engine 65 left on Tuesday morning as part of the Santa Clara County team to assist in operation, the Fire Department said in a tweet. The engine is made up of a fire Capt. Marc Muzzi, firefighter John Preston and firefighter-paramedics Eban Johnson and Adam Fortino, Deputy Chief Catherine Capriles said. Two of the four employees had also battled the North Bay wildfires in October.
The team could spend as long as 14 days in southern California as part of the firefighting response, she said. They arrived to the Ventura County fairgrounds on Tuesday where they slept and sent to a 24-hour structure-defense assignment in Ojai on Wednesday.
Ten engines comprising of 44 firefighters from Marin County Fire, San Rafael, Ross Valley, and Tiburon also left Tuesday morning, Marin County Fire Battalion Chief Bret McTigue said.
"We expect more requests throughout the day," McTigue said.
Four Alameda County firefighters with Engine 304 and four firefighters from the Mountain View Fire Department who are part of the San Mateo County strike team were deployed Tuesday morning.
The Thomas Fire was reported around 6:25 p.m. Monday. It started north of Santa Paula near state Highway 150 and was threatening 12,000 structures as of Wednesday morning, according to Cal Fire officials.