San Diego

Local Firefighters Sent to Battle Deadly Fire Near Yosemite

Fire departments across San Diego are sending teams to help fight a deadly brush fire that began Friday near the west end of Yosemite National Park.

Cal Fire San Diego dispatched about 20 people to battle what has been dubbed the Ferguson Fire, according to Fire Captain Isaac Sanchez.

Chula Vista Fire Department (CVFD) was dispatched Sunday night.

"This fire is very active and is moving towards populated areas," Chula Vista Firefighters Local2180 wrote on their Facebook page. "Unfortunately, this fire has already claimed the life of a Cal Fire Dozer Operator."

Firefighter Braden Varney was killed over the weekend while working on a bulldozer to try to prevent the fire from spreading.

A San Miguel Fire and Rescue spokesperson said they have not sent crews to Northern California yet, but they anticipate they may have to if the blaze keeps growing. 

The fire nearly doubled in size Sunday night, scorching over 14 square miles (36 kilometers) of brush and timber.

The fire was two-percent contained as of Monday morning.

The wildfire that killed Varney is one of several burning across the state and among 56 large blazes that are active in the U.S., most in the American West, a region struggling with drought and heat.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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