Nashville Firefighters deploying to Gatlinburg

Raging wildfires in and around the resort towns of Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge and Sevierville spurred thousands of evacuations.

Raging wildfires in and around the resort towns of Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge and Sevierville spurred thousands of evacuations.

The Nashville Fire Department sent 14 people and five vehicles to help fight the fires in Sevier County this Tuesday.

The department sent 10 firefighters, two paramedics, one district EMS chief and one district fire chief, along with two fire engines, an ambulance and two heavy SUVs.

“Nashvillians are always willing to step up and help when needed, just as many communities around Tennessee stepped up to help us during the flood in 2010,” said Mayor Megan Barry. “Our thoughts and prayers are with all those impacted by the forest fires, as well as the brave first responders who are working around the clock to save lives and properties in the area. We hope for a safe and speedy return of our Nashville Fire Department employees who will be assisting in Sevier County.”

The request came through the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency, which is asking statewide for 80 heavy vehicles from across the state to help fight the fire that has led to the evacuation of thousands and destroyed hundreds of homes near Gatlinburg. The NFD personnel will head to Pigeon Forge; it is unclear how long they will be deployed there.

“If a neighbor needs help, we’re going to help,” said Nashville Fire Chief Rick White. “Our paramedics and firefighters are ready and eager to do what needs to be done.”