How is Cal Fire handling mental health struggles among firefighters?

A firefighter works as the Caldor Fire burns in Grizzly Flats, California, U.S., on August 22, 2021. Photo by REUTERS/Fred Greaves/File Photo.

Post-traumatic stress disorder, suicidal ideation, and endless work rotations all typically plague military members returning from war. But they’re also mental health struggles that chronically overworked California firefighters endure. Cal Fire, the state’s firefighting agency, deals with those realities among its workforce, plus low morale. Ten percent of its workers quit last year. And California’s hot, dry wilderness and longer, more devastating fires make firefighting a much harder job to do now than ever before. CalMatters reporter Julie Cart talks to KCRW about her four-part series chronicling the struggles of Cal Fire firefighters.