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Delaware Forest Service fire crew in CA helping to fight the Dexter Fire

Delaware’s three person engine crew is in California helping to fight the more than 2,000-acre Dexter Fire.

And they’re making progress to snuff out the flames:

The Dexter Fire continues to burn about two hours east of Fresno, California in the Inyo National Forest.

A lighting strike on July 12, 2021 sparked the fire, according to Kyle Hoyd - the assistant forestry administrator for the Delaware Forest Service.

He says the forest service’s engine crew of two men and one woman mobilized the next day and are battling the blaze along with 305 other personnel.

Hoyd says they’re doing well, “I talk to them every night roughly and they’re doing fantastic. They’re doing the work they’re doing. It’s a little bit smaller fire than what we’re used to. Our crews are used to battling those 100,000-plus-acre fires. But the neat thing about that is, we’re really able to showcase what we know how to do, which is to fight fire.”

Hoyd says to date, the Dexter Fire has burned around 2,900-acres and it’s currently 95% contained.


He says Delaware’s crew are tamping out flames, securing fire lines and assisting two other teams to cut lines for burnout operations.

Hoyd notes that engine boss Erich Burkentine of Milton, engine boss trainee Nikki Testa of Newark and firefighter Hunter Melson of Milford will - by the end of this week - be rotated away from the Dexter Fire and moved to the Angeles National Forest for initial attack operations in the Pasadena area - as California remains in the middle of fire season.

Unpredictable winds and isolated thunderstorms are keeping a red flag warning in place for many.



Kelli Steele has over 30 years of experience covering news in Delaware, Baltimore, Winchester, Virginia, Phoenix, Arizona and San Diego, California.