Friday, 19 July 2024

128-acre fire near Nice contained

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A Cal Fire air tanker drops fire retardant on a fire that began behind Robinson Rancheria Saturday. Photo by Dave Hendrick.

 

NICE – Northshore firefighters took on their largest wildland fire of the season so far, battling a Saturday afternoon blaze that burned 128 acres near Robinson Rancheria.


Suzie Blankenship, a Cal Fire fire prevention specialist, said the fire was reported at 3:45 p.m. It broke out in steep, rugged terrain behind the rancheria's playground, which is located behind the main area of the rancheria.


Witnesses at the scene said the fire then burned up into the hills toward Nice.


Northshore Fire Protection District, Cal Fire and Lakeport Fire Protection District responded to the scene, said Northshore Chief Jim Robbins. The Lake County Sheriff's Office also was at the scene to control traffic.


Blankenship said Cal Fire sent seven engines, four dozers, three fire handcrews, one air attack, five air tankers and three helicopters, along with two officers on the ground helping an incident commander organize the effort.


Another five engines from Northshore Fire responded, said Robbins, along with two four-wheel drive attack units, he and a battalion chief. Lakeport Fire also sent an engine.


Blankenship said firefighters had difficulty fighting the fire because of high-tension power lines in the area, which limited the use of air crews.


The fire was contained at 7:15 p.m., said Blankenship.


However, the fire was far from out at that point, said Robbins.


“There's still a lot of hot spots,” he said from the scene.


Because of the need to monitor the area, Robbins said crews were being ordered in overnight.


No single family dwellings were threatened, said Robbins, although a few small sheds that were buried in the remote area's brush were destroyed.


There were no injuries to area residents or firefighters, said Robbins.


Robbins said it was the biggest blaze that Northshore Fire has had to fight so far this season.


The wind helped the fire spread rapidly, said Robbins.


“We went from 20 acres to about 60, 70 acres in less than 20 minutes, it had such a good westerly wind on it,” he said.


The cause of the fire is under investigation, said Robbins. A Cal Fire official was at the fire scene Saturday evening in an effort to determine the source.


E-mail Elizabeth Larson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


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