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Ahead of the curve: Arizona Red Cross prepping for fire season

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PHOENIX -- The Grand Canyon Chapter of the Red Cross has started shipping supplies and equipment to locations across the state to be in position to respond quickly to wildfire emergencies.

Todd Tamcsin with Red Cross said the prepositioned trailers will allow the volunteers to get shelters up and running quickly if wildfires force evacuations.

"We have diapers, clothes, basic dry good supplies, obviously cots and more," Tamcsin said. "We'll be able to unload the trailers and set up our tables and chairs and be ready for business in short order. We currently have about 800 volunteers in the state. ... We can get a shelter up in about 2 hours."

The Red Cross helped hundreds of evacuees during last year's Yarnell Hill fire, which destroyed dozens of homes, forced evacuations and left 19 firefighters dead.

Arizona Red Cross volunteers also responded last year to the aftermath of Typoon Haiyan in the Philippines and the massive tornado in Moore, Okla.

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About the Author


Position: Senior News Reporter. Started with KTAR July 4, 1999.

Favorite spots in Arizona: Pinetop-Lakeside, Alpine, Greer.

Have covered some of the biggest stories in Arizona including nine of the top 10 largest wildfires in state history. The Wallow Fire in 2011 became the largest fire in state history. Rodeo-Chediski Fire in June 2002, which is the second largest fire in Arizona. Covered the Yarnell Hill Tragedy in June 2013 that left 19 Granite Mountain Hotshots dead.

Favorite movies: True Grit, both 1969 John Wayne classic and the remake with Jeff Bridges and Lonesome Dove.

Sports Teams: Washington State University Cougars, Texas Longhorns, The University of Montana Grizzlies.

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