WASHINGTON — The Canadians helping to beat back California’s wildfires are getting relief this week, but some of their replacements are headed to Oregon instead.
Sixty firefighters from Quebec have spent the last two weeks helping to bring northern California’s North Complex blaze under control.
But officials say two of the three Canadian relief crews will instead go to Oregon, where fires have killed at least eight people and scorched more than 4,000 square kilometres.
Alberta Wildfire said on Twitter that 45 firefighters from the province are headed to the state this week.
This week 45 firefighters from Alberta are travelling to Oregon to assist with wildfire efforts. They will be following strict COVID-19 protocols in the U.S. and once they return. Alberta Wildfire is happy to assist international partners through our resource-sharing agreements. pic.twitter.com/ckFl0OZVrb
— Alberta Wildfire (@AlbertaWildfire) September 15, 2020
Smoke from up and down the U.S. west coast is blanketing the continent, reaching as far east as Washington, D.C., and affecting air quality across Canada.
The crisis has also reached the presidential campaign trail, where Joe Biden is blaming climate change while Donald Trump accuses the states of poor forest management.
The Canadian Press