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Lightning Strikes Spark 15-25 Small Fires in Plumas County

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Updated: 8/19/2013 10:58 am

The Forest Service has stated a number of small fires have been sparked in the central and eastern portions of the Plumas County National Forest, prompting voluntary evacuations.

The Forest Service has stated this morning roughly 15-25 small fires have been sparked in the central and eastern portions of the Plumas County National Forest. Three small fires north of Lake Davis have lines around them in addition to one in the Calpine Look-out area. The majority of the fires are in the Keddie Ridge/North Arm areas of Indian Valley near Taylorsville.

The Forest Service has indicated most of the fires are reasonably small. Several, including the Johnson (approx.10 acres) & Mt. Hough (approx. 130 acres) fires, on the north slope of Mt. Hough are very conspicuous, especially at night.

The Plumas County Sheriff’s Office issued voluntary evacuation notices to people living on Arlington Road between and including the Arlington Trailer Park and Johnson Ranch. Voluntary evacuation notices were also issued for people living on a short segment of North Valley Road near Diamond Mountain Road due to the 1/2 Mountain Fire. That fire has a line around it and is 80% contained.

The fires are very apparent within Indian Valley. Smoke is visible to other nearby communities in Plumas and Lassen counties this morning. In addition to local resources, numerous strike teams of engines and hand crews have been ordered in addition to air resources. There was little to no moisture from the thunderstorms in the area of the fires although moisture was received in other areas within Indian Valley. Fire size varies from single tree to about 130 acres for the Hough fire.

The area is being monitored from the air to assist firefighters on the ground; it is likely more fires will be reported during the morning.

Resources, including smokejumpers, continue to arrive and are being assigned where the needs are the greatest. Multiple air tanker drops were made before dark and are continuing this morning.

As of this morning, the forest is in “initial attack mode,” that is, things are rapidly evolving in terms of fire size-up and appropriate staffing. Efforts are focused on getting resources on the ground. In terms of strategic planning, an incident command post is being established in Taylorsville and a Type 2 Incident Command Team will come on board Tuesday morning. 

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