Farmington firefighters reinforce crews fighting Diego Fire

Created: 07/02/2014 7:50 PM
By: Devin Neeley, KOB Eyewitness News 4

Robert Sterrett packs up a type 3 apparatus –brush fire truck- early Wednesday morning.

“It’s not just us, it’s San Juan County, Albuquerque Fire, its Santa Fe Fire all the other cities, and they have guys going out just like us.”

Sterrett and two other Farmington firefighters headed south to reinforce crews fighting the Diego fire.

“The forest service and feds they rely on us to fill the gaps when they are run too thin,” he said.

And as the truck is packed up with gear to fight the fire, feed, shelter, clothe and protect the three men, they tell us that it will be 14 long days of tough work.

‘It’s not uncommon to do 16 hour days, regularly.”

But the hardest part might be what they are leaving behind.

“I have 2 boys and a wife that I will miss 4th of July with.” He said, “and maybe my 15th anniversary so its extremely tough to leave sometimes.”

And this will likely not be his only call out this season.

“If conditions continue the way they are, no. Not a chance.”

But he tells us it's all worth it.

“If we go for structure protection, that’s what we are awesome at, I mean we protect structures every day on our normal job.  And if they call to come assist with that and you pull it off, there is no greater than protecting somebody's house or property.”

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