Local News

"Fire Boss" helps put out West Plains wildfire

SPOKANE, Wash. - "Fire Boss" helps put out West Plains wildfire

Department of Natural Resources crews are mopping up a 15-acre brush fire on the West Plains.

The fire broke out Saturday night around 6 p.m. The fire is 100% contained but crews are still on scene monitoring the area.

"We put seven loads on that fire. We were there a little under 2 hours," Eric Johnson said.

Johnson is the pilot of the Fire Boss, a water-dropping plane, that is used to attack fires from above.

"We just get there and try to support the ground guys, get it knocked down to the ground a little bit so it's easier and safer to handle," Johnson said.

On Saturday the plane dropped water and retardant, helping ground crews to knock down the fire.

The plane is stationed at the Deer Park Airport. It's on a 60-day contract with DNR that started July 1st. So far, it's logged about 30 hours.

"Done 100 and some loads in Washington State," Johnson said.

Johnson says most of the work has been done outside the Spokane area but with dry and hot conditions in the forecast, Johnson could be spending many more hours fighting fires in Spokane with the Fire Boss.

"Just like fireman everywhere you try to stay ready and be there when they need you," Johnson said.