Video shows 165-mph, 2,700-degree fire tornado that killed firefighter

REDDING (KPIX 5) — Recently released video from Cal Fire shows the most intense tornado ever in California history that trapped and killed a firefighter in Redding last month.

37-year-old Jeremiah “Jeremy” Stoke was a longtime Redding Fire Department veteran. According to Cal fire, on July 26th, he was driving his truck in northwest Redding and helping evacuate residents from the Carr Fire when he got into trouble.

Stoke radioed out a mayday call, saying he was getting burned over. Then his transmissions abruptly stopped.

The fire tornado exploded in the middle of what was already a gigantic and devastating wildfire.

The fire vortex was so unusual, Cal Fire investigators are still struggling to understand it.

While it was not the first documented fire tornado in California – a similar event happened at Coffey Park last October, for instance – but it was certainly the most powerful.

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The actual vortex is visible in the video released by Cal Fire.


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