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More Thunderstorms Predicted as Fire Crews Respond to Lightning-Sparked Fires

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Updated 4:30p.m.: Fire crews are continuing to patrol fires started by lightning yesterday on Bureau of Land Management-administered lands in northeast California and far northwest Nevada.

Rain from thunderstorms helped crews stop the forward progress of these fires.  Fire engines, ground crews and aircraft were also used to battle these blazes.

The Eagle Lake Field Office in Susanville reported 14 fires totaling 469 acres.  The R2 Fire on Shaffer Mountain, previously reported at 90 acres was stopped at 26 acres.  The revised acreage is due to better mapping.

The R9 Fire in the Twin Peaks Wilderness Study Area east of Ravendale was stopped at 280 acres.  The R10 Fire, south of R9 was stopped at 84 acres and the R13 Fire in the Dry Valley Rim area was stopped at 75 acres.

In the BLM Applegate Field Office jurisdiction, Alturas, crews responded to eight fires totaling seven acres.

Crews from the BLM Surprise Field Station in Cedarville contained at 142-acre fire on the Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge yesterday.  The fire was previously reported at 165 acres.  The revision is due to more accurate mapping.

There were no structures damaged in any of these fires.

Fire crews are continuing to respond to fire reports as thunderstorms move across northeast California today.

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Crews from the Susanville Interagency Fire Center have responded to 45 reported fires after thunderstorms rolled across northeast California yesterday afternoon and evening.

The fires were concentrated on Bureau of Land Management-administered lands in eastern Lassen County, and on forestlands protected by the CAL FIRE in the west-central parts of Lassen County. Crews also responded to three fires on BLM-managed lands in far northwest Nevada.

There were 28 fires on BLM lands managed by the Eagle Lake Field Office in Susanville along and east of the U. S. Highway 395 corridor north of Susanville. Crews are working on seven blazes on lands managed by the BLM’s Applegate Field Office in Alturas and Cedarville.

Crews were fighting 17 fires on lands protected by CAL FIRE northwest of Susanville.

Officials at SIFC said firefighting resources, including air tankers, helicopters, smokejumpers, ground crews and bulldozers have been assigned to all ongoing fires.

Yesterday’s largest fire burned about 165 acres of high desert land near the Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge in far northern Washoe County Nevada before crews stopped its forward progress. Crews also held a fire on Shaffer Mountain near Litchfield to about 90 acres. Crews are working to keep the remaining fires small.

Fire crews today will be bracing for another round of thunderstorms and potential fire starts, said Eric Ewing, Lassen County’s chief of emergency services. Crews will also be ready to respond to “sleeper” fires, smoldering lightning strikes that could spring to life when conditions warm up in the afternoon.

“We are asking everyone to be extremely careful with outdoor use of fire,” Ewing said. “Our firefighting resources are stretched thin, and human-caused fires will pull them away from fighting the lightning fires.”

Jeremy Couso
Jeremy Couso
SusanvilleStuff.com Publisher/Editor
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