GLENDALE, Ore. — Fire crews have to be out of Glendale High School on August 20th for school to start back up and they say they are not sure where they are going to go next.
By the time that date comes around, the Douglas Complex Incident Management Team hopes to only have 400 firefighters still battling the fire, but they still need a place for those firefighters to go.
“Well it can’t just be a camp for us to camp in, it’s got to be a camp that will be able to process more than 158 miles of hose, dozens and dozens of pumps and portotanks,” Logistics Section Chief, Malcom Hiatt, said. “They have to come back and be cleaned and then be shipped back to where they came from.”
Fire officials say they are asking around the community and working with local banks to find available spaces in the riddle area.
“There’s a manufacturing building there that is owned by Umpqua Bank and we are working with Umpqua Bank to see if that will be a suitable place to rent,” Hiatt added.
They are also looking into places they are already using like the Fir Point Bible Camp. It’s located down the road from Glendale High School and right now, night crews are using the camp to sleep. The camp owners are letting the fire crews use the space after being advised to not hold bible camp this summer due to the fire.
“We’re willing to do whatever they need because a fire is an important thing to get put out,” bible camp caretaker, Dennis May, commented.
With the fire nearing 50% containment, the Incident Management Team is starting to send crews home.
“The crews are working really good and we are getting a lot of production out of it,” Hiatt said. “If they are reaching their 14 day limit we will go ahead and give them their rest and rotation so we can keep them on longer and then the crews who aren’t working so well, we will get rid of those first.”
Starting Monday, a checkout station is set up in camp for fire crews either being sent home for rest and relaxation time or leaving the camp completely.