Fire crews continue to battle flames amid triple-digit temperatures in Valley

Vince Ybarra Image
Monday, July 3, 2023
Fire crews continue to battle flames amid high temperatures
A fire in southeast Fresno sent a large plume of black smoke into the air in southeast Fresno.

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Fire crews were called to a fire Sunday afternoon on Church Avenue near South Orange Avenue in southeast Fresno.

Video from ABC30 Insider Chris Rodriguez shows smoke covering the sky. Fresno City Fire Department said chemicals spilled onto the ground, making it difficult for fire crews to put out the flames.

"As our firefighters put it out, it created a pool, a mix of water and these corrosives. None of our firefighters were injured. But it did damage a lot of their PPE," said Fresno City Fire Department Battalion Chief Kirk Wanless.

Firefighters were seen with towels around their necks at the scene. As the summer heat starts to increase, temperatures become a concern for fire crews.

"Firefighting is dangerous in itself, but then you take the 110-degree weather, and it takes a toll on you. It means our firefighters can work as long, can't work as hard," said Wanless.

An emergency response team of volunteers goes out to ensure fire crews have what they need during these hot summer days. As the holiday weekend continues, Wanless encourages people to be careful while handling fireworks.

According to experts, fireworks injuries have increased by 26 percent over the past five years.

"It's exponentially worse. It's gotten, in my opinion, out of hand. We just need our people to recognize that," said Wanless.

Fresno City Fire Department wants everyone to have fun 4th of July, but it encourages people to take extra precautions when handling fireworks.

For news updates, follow Vince Ybarra on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.