Simulated firefight gets neighborhood attention

, Posted: Tue, June 17 2014 at 2:20 PM, Updated: Wed, June 18 2014 at 8:40 AM

Grants Pass, Ore. -- All the predictions are leading fire officials to suspect an extremely active wildfire season in 2014.

Fire crews in Grants Pass are testing their response with the area's strike task force. The Rogue Valley Task Force #1 is comprised of Applegate Fire District #9, Rogue River Fire District, Illinois Fire District, Grants Pass Fire & Rescue and Rural Metro Fire Department.

For three day's, these groups will train to protect homes in the area from spreading wildfire.

Lloyd Lawless/ Battalion Chief, Grants Pass Fire Rescue says, "Basically they're working a spot fire that's outside the parameter which is a priority, so they're sending most of their resources to that."

In 2010, the group was called to support agencies in Ashland's Oak Knoll neighborhood to help suppress the devastating wildfire that jumped from a feild over Interstate-5 and consumed 11 homes.

"We could never be too far ahead of the game. It's only going to take one fire in one location that is going to limit our resources and capabilities," Lawless said.

Nearby, homeowners took notice. Pilar Reynolds has lived in the area for more than thirteen years.

"They've been very diligent at responding to calls," she said about their fire  response times over the years.

For Battalion Chief Lawless and his crew, it's about doing everything they can now to be ready for what could be one of Southern Oregon's most active fire seasons ever.





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