News Column

Wildfires Still Burning in Northern California

August 20, 2013

Firefighters continue to battle major wildfires in Northern California. And with the National Weather Service's Red Flag Warning -- signaling prime conditions for fire ignition -- Cal Fire has increased staffing and resources. The warning, due to the possibility of dry lightning and gusty winds, lasts through Wednesday.

Swedes fire, Butte County:

Evacuations are in effect for the Swedes fire, which has consumed 2,139 acres and has reached 64 percent containment since it began on Friday. One residential structure, one garage, three outbuildings and multiple vehicles were destroyed, while more than 700 structures are threatened.

Plumas Lightning Complex, Plumas County:

A Sunday thunderstorm sparked 16 fires across 180 acres in the central and eastern portions of Plumas National Forest. Most are near the community of Taylorsville, which has faced evacuation orders. Containment varies fire to fire.

Bridges fire, Calaveras County:

Firefighters nearly have a handle on the 47-acre fire, which was 80 percent contained Monday. Two injuries so far.

Double fire, Lake County:

The 70-acre fire, which first sparked on Friday, was fully contained Sunday morning.

American fire, Placer County:

At nearly 15,000 acres, the American fire has closed roads, destroyed one building and resulted in two minor injuries. Firefighters have reached 53 percent containment. It's been raging since Aug. 10, creating heavy smoke in the Sierra Foothills, Tahoe area and Sacramento Valley.

Rim fire, Tuolumne County:

The fire in the Stanislaus National Forest began Saturday, is 0 percent contained and is burning 800 acres. It has forced the closure of Highway 120, a major Yosemite National Park route. Extreme growth potential and steep terrain make it a challenge for firefighters.

Orleans Complex, Siskiyou County:

While the 577-acre Dance Fire has been contained, the neighboring Butler fire is burning 17,353 acres at 30 percent containment. Some roads are closed, air quality and health advisories are in effect, and firefighters don't expect full containment until mid-September.

Salmon River Complex, Siskiyou County:

Evacuations are in effect for the 14,171-acre fire, which is 85 percent contained. The human-caused fire began July 31, and imminent full containment is expected.

Corral Complex, Humboldt County:

One injury has been reported in the 4,700-acre fire burning through the Six Rivers National Forest, which was ignited by lightning on Aug. 10. No road closures, no evacuations and 0 percent containment thus far.

Sources: U.S. Forest Service; California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection

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(c)2013 The Sacramento Bee (Sacramento, Calif.)

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Source: Copyright Sacramento Bee (CA) 2013


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