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Local firefighters on high alert this holiday weekend for elevated fire danger

062920 Niland Fire 01 - El Centro Fire

Along with trying to stay cool from the heat, local firefighters are on high alert this holiday weekend for elevated fire danger.

News Channel 3's Dani Romero continues our team coverage with more how they are staying prepared. 

At the Roy Wilson Fire Station in Thousand Palms and the other 93 Cal Fire stations across our county, a staffing pattern is in place with extra resources as part of the build up of what is expected to be the hottest weekend. 

“Well with the heat wave and the humidity being down so low, obviously that brings the possibility of having significant wild land fires throughout Riverside County," said Cal Fire Captain Fernando Herrera.

Herrera said his crew is prepared for any fire threat. 

“We staffed additional brush engines. We'll also staff, our brush patrols. And then we'll staff our hand crews at our inmate cap stations. we'll also staff our firefighter hand crews," said Herrera.

Palm Springs Fire crews also gearing up for the heat. 

“Supplied our engines and made sure we had plenty of water. We made sure all our equipment, of course always working in order. We put extra hose on some of our engines,"said Captain Nathan Gunkel.

Some of their firefighters are on standby. 

“We've already kind of already started planning to who's able to come in if necessary. so if you have to send an engine out of town or if we get really, really busy in our town, who's able to come in and backfill so we can still provide a service.” 

And as temperatures reach triple digits in our valley, Cathedral City Fire implements a heat policy for their crew members. 

“We just make sure that we rotate people out every 30 minutes, " said Chief John Muhr. "We do medical monitoring and keep track of people's vital signs."

While some might consider taking this weekend trim back the brush, firefighters are advising. 

“If you're going to do any type of work outdoors, whether it's weed whacking or clearing some of those shrubbery around your house, you want to do that early in the morning," said Herrera. "You want to stop by 10 o'clock.” 

And one last reminder this holiday weekend. 

“You want to be very careful in anything you do outdoors, whether it's barbecuing, whether it's having, you know, some sort of a small family gathering," said Herrera.

For more information on how to assemble an emergency supply kit. CLICK HERE.

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Dani Romero

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