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Colton Rural Fire Protection District No. 70 declares emergency to help quickly address hazards posed by North Cascade Complex fires

COURTESY PHOTO: CCSO - Fire crews fight the Unger Road fire in Colton.The Colton Rural Fire Protection District No. 70 board declared a state of emergency Sept. 17 because it was running low on resources while battling nearby wildfires.

According to the district, the district "has expended or will shortly expend its necessary and available resources." The board sought assistance from the state and Clackamas County.

On Monday, district staff and board members began the paperwork for federal and state funding. They are also working on debriefing sessions within the Colton volunteer units.

"Our volunteers earned high praise from our mutual aid community, and some members of our team have been nominated for awards and honors," Colton Fire Chief Richard Beaudoin said.

The state and Clackamas County had already declared a state of emergency. Taking the local action allows the fire board and the fire district staff greater flexibility to quickly address hazards posed by the North Cascade Complex (which includes the Dowty, Unger, Wilhoit and Graves fires). It also provides for quicker deployment of resources and staffing to safeguard the fire district and the community it serves.

The designation also aids the district's efforts when requesting assistance and/or reimbursement for expenditures related to the North Cascade Complex Fire response.

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