Crew member killed fighting North Bay fires identified

SANTA ROSA, Calif. (KGO) -- A water tender driver who died while battling the North Bay fires has been identified. Officials say Garrett Paiz was a private contractor and his death was the first fatality among crews working on the frontlines of the fires.

Per the Noel Fire Department in Missouri, the 38-year-old was a volunteer firefighter for the community. They say he was working as a volunteer firefighter in Washington state when he was dispatched to Northern California.

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Paiz died after his rig overturned on its way down the Oakville Grade at the Nuns Fire. The cab landed upside down on the side of a hill just below the roadway and the empty water tank became detached.

The CHP will be looking at several factors that could have caused the accident.

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"We'll be looking at things such as evidence in the road, tire friction marks, gauge marks, wheel stamping which is indicative of a vehicle rolling on its side, how far it went down the hill," said Capt. Chris Childs.

Officials say his wife left for California on Tuesday to bring his remains home.

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