Massive Carr Fire Tornado Kills Local Firefighter and Hero

Massive Carr Fire Tornado Kills Local Firefighter and Hero

Posted: Aug 16, 2018 7:37 PM
Updated: Aug 16, 2018 7:41 PM

REDDING, Calif - The Carr Fire has taken many things from the Shasta County community including homes, and a sense of safety.

But perhaps saddest of all is beloved Redding Fire Fighter Jeremy Stoke.

Stoke worked for the Redding Fire Department for more than a decade.
In that time he was known as a man who loved the San Francisco Giants, metal music, and would do anything to help someone else.

That bravery was lived out until his last day.

In a 20-page Cal Fire report obtained by Action News Now, investigators say on July 26th around 7:23 p.m. a large rotating plume of smoke began developing near Buenaventura Boulevard.

The swirling winds at the base of the plume dramatically increased fire intensity until it developed into a fire tornado.

“That weather event took place ... I mean it just exasperated. I mean like a snap of the fingers it took off that fast into West Redding." said Cal Fire Deputy Chief Scott McLean

Just a little over 15 minutes later, Stoke was driving south on Buenaventura Boulevard.

Then a minute later he radioed a “mayday”.

RELATED: HONORING A FALLEN CARR FIRE HERO 

Stoke called for help a second time.

This time he told crews he was in the middle of the road, he was being burned over and needed a water drop.

However, when crews tried to get his exact location the call went silent.

Jeremy died inside that fire tornado which reached winds speeds of 136-165 mph, and temperatures as high as 2,700 degrees.

He was trying to evacuate people.

“Educate the public and try to explain why we need to evacuate when the time is or they are given those evacuation orders,” said Mclean

Cal Fire officials Action News Now spoke with say this tragedy including the tragic loss of bulldozer operators Don Ray Smith have started a conversation on new safety procedures in light of the erratic behavior of this fire.

“In this team, whether it’s a firefighter, hand crew, dozer operator, aircraft it doesn’t matter its definitely ongoing items of discussion how are we going to provide for this safety how are we going to be able to fight this,” said McLean.

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 3559311

Reported Deaths: 51794
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles118923221241
Riverside2894503767
San Bernardino2860772783
Orange2607213982
San Diego2589823260
Santa Clara1102371777
Kern102627811
Fresno950151422
Sacramento929611464
Alameda802791241
Ventura77395834
San Joaquin665691082
Contra Costa62164674
Stanislaus55887946
Tulare47784746
Monterey42138327
San Mateo38872515
San Francisco34138398
Santa Barbara31763407
Solano30024164
Merced28915395
Sonoma28004298
Imperial26855589
Kings21951218
Placer19763232
San Luis Obispo19612227
Madera15414209
Santa Cruz14588183
Marin13136197
Yolo12787185
Shasta10969174
Butte10922160
El Dorado9095100
Napa899869
Sutter884597
San Benito575259
Yuba573336
Lassen560119
Tehama508152
Tuolumne394659
Nevada394074
Mendocino379643
Amador344841
Humboldt318033
Lake314140
Glenn221923
Colusa212813
Calaveras190547
Siskiyou174014
Inyo128736
Mono12114
Del Norte9875
Plumas6536
Modoc4524
Mariposa3957
Trinity3675
Sierra990
Alpine810
Unassigned00
Chico
Clear
39° wxIcon
Hi: 63° Lo: 35°
Feels Like: 32°
Oroville
Clear
43° wxIcon
Hi: 63° Lo: 43°
Feels Like: 38°
Chico
Clear
39° wxIcon
Hi: 58° Lo: 39°
Feels Like: 32°
Red Bluff
Partly Cloudy
42° wxIcon
Hi: 40° Lo: 15°
Feels Like: 38°
Red Bluff
Clear
42° wxIcon
Hi: 63° Lo: 41°
Feels Like: 38°
Chico
Clear
39° wxIcon
Hi: 65° Lo: 38°
Feels Like: 32°
It was a bright and breezy Friday for northern California, however the wind has been much stronger over Modoc County where a High Wind Warning is in effect through this evening. Stronger wind and cooler air will define our weather Saturday.
KHSL Severe
KHSL Radar
KHSL Temperatures

Community Events