(LEX 18)– Kentucky fire fighters have joined thousands of others attempting to stop the deadly California wildfires.
Teams from the Kentucky State Division of Forestry are currently on the front lines near Yosemite National Park.
Crews are working 16 hours a day, sleeping in tents and fighting this fire just with the tools they can carry.
The Kentucky team is on a two week rotation in California.
Kentucky Fire Management Chief Brandon Howard describes long days of oppressive heat, rough terrain and breathing air thick with smoke.
"They have to be very aware of their surroundings. The tree heights are much higher than what we deal with in Kentucky.
The fires will just take off and explode. They’ll climb by thousands and thousands of acres at a time."
49 Kentucky firefighters are currently deployed to five western states where wildfires have erupted.
The flames in California have destroyed a quarter-million acres of the state, and destroyed more than 1,000 structures.
Eight people have died in wildfires across the state.