Oregonians Head To California To Aid In Kincade Fire Relief Efforts

Oct 30, 2019

Carissa Hettich heads to board her flight to Oakland. Hettich is one of 14 Red Cross volunteers called to help with disaster relief efforts in Sonoma County, California.
Credit Melorie Begay/KLCC News

California’s Kincade Fire has burned more than 76,000 acres, causing one of the largest evacuations in that state’s history. Hundreds of volunteers are aiding relief efforts, including 14 Red Cross volunteers from Southern Washington and Oregon. 

About 180,000 Sonoma County residents have fled their homes. NPR member station KQED has reported the fire won’t be fully contained for another week.

Executive Director of the SW Oregon Chapter of the Red Cross Cascades Region, Carissa Hettich at the Eugene airport.
Credit Melorie Begay/KLCC

Until the situation improves, folks like Eugene’s Carissa Hettich are headed south. She’s the Executive Director of the SW Oregon Chapter of the Red Cross Cascades Region

“I’ll be working in the area of community partnerships and also with Latino engagement. That’s how we organize volunteers, they are trained in a specific area it could be sheltering, could be feeding, could be logistics,” Hettich said.

Hettich said locals can help by donating funds directly to fire relief efforts through the Red Cross and donate blood.

Oregon Firefighters Also On Scene

Members of the Washington County task force conducted burn out operations and extinguished hot spots at the Kincade Fire.
Credit Oregon Office of State Fire Marshal

The Oregon State Fire Marshall mobilized 15 strike teams, including 271 fire service personal. Firefighters from 15 counties have been in California assisting with two fires since Monday

Initially, six teams were deployed to aid in the Burris Fire in Mendocino County. Those teams have now been called to join the nine other teams currently fighting the Kincade Fire in Sonoma County,