Fire season looms as smaller fires begin to bloom
“There are still a lot of dead winter fuels lying around,” Kincaid said. “We’ve already had a couple of escapes this year, and when people aren’t careful, even the simple stuff can get away from them.”
SIFC dispatcher Rob Cobb added that one contributing factor is that the humidity is still pretty low, which can be a major contributing factor to the spread of wildfire.
Kincaid also mentioned that the time to burn debris without a burn permit is running out. Burn permits will be required as of Thursday, May 1, and Kincaid said people should pretty much expect the annual countywide ban on all burning at the beginning of July. Kincaid said the May 1 burn permit reinstatement is a mandated state statute decided by the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.
Debris piles have already started popping up, with fewer flue fires going out of control as the weather starts to get warmer.
The most recent incident occurred on Bureau of Land Management land at around 2:30 p.m. on Tuesday April 8, after a Winnebago caught on fire roughly 3 1/2 miles north of Likely, along Highway 395. While the BLM has listed no official cause of the fire, SIFC officials speculated the fire was most likely caused by electrical issues from within the Winnebago. No one was reported injured, and the fire was contained to the area just around the vehicle.
The next incident occurred at about 1:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 8, when sparks from a blown transformer caused a small fire at the base of a power pole along Highway 395 near Leavitt Lake. First responding fire agencies were able to contain the fire before it spread to nearby poles and brush. The fire spread to roughly a quarter acre.
Activity for the beginning of the month included a flue fire taking out a 10-foot by 10-foot area on the roof of a large home on Four Oaks Road in Susanville just after 7 p.m. on Friday, April 4. Firefighters arrived on scene in time to prevent the spot fire from spreading to the rest of the house. No one was reported injured.
Members of the Lassen County fire agencies said they would like to warn people to be careful with fire. Current conditions can still cause trouble when people aren’t careful. It’s very important to have a good clearance around debris piles and structures.
Remember, a minimum of 100-foot clearances around structures is required by local fire agencies and the state of California. The first 30 feet is a good clearance, and the next 70 feet is good for spacing between trees and brush. This is called defensible space by the fire agencies and is necessary in order to help protect your home in the event of wildland fire near your property.
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