Some Australian firefighters heading to Okanogan complex
OKANOGAN, Wash. (AP) — Help is coming from Down Under to help fight the Okanogan Complex of wildfires, the largest in Washington history.
Sixteen of the Australian firefighters who have arrived in the United States to help battle Western blazes will be assigned to the Okanogan Complex.
Fire spokesman Rick Isaacson says the firefighters will be in north-central Washington on Thursday.
Isaacson says they are mid-level fire managers who will mostly work in support functions, although some may operate bulldozers.
Isaacson says the Australians have similar training programs to U.S. firefighters and he doesn’t expect them to have any trouble blending in.
The Okanogan Complex grew 2.6 square miles overnight and now stands at 403 square miles. Isaacson says there are 1,345 people battling the flames.