SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Officials say a firefighter who died while helping people evacuate a Northern California blaze was killed by a fire tornado that at one point reached a temperature of 2,700 degrees Fahrenheit (1,480 centigrade).
The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection says in a report that Redding firefighter Jeremy Stoke died after he was enveloped in seconds by a fire tornado with a base the size of three football fields and winds up to 165 miles (265 kilometers) an hour.
The report released Wednesday says that on July 26 the 37-year-old fire inspector was driving his pickup truck down a Redding road, working on evacuating people. One minute later he radioed out a "mayday" call saying he was getting burned over, and then his transmissions abruptly stopped.
Information from: San Francisco Chronicle, http://www.sfgate.com