Two Placer County Fires Keep Crews Busy on Sweltering Day

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LINCOLN -- A wood pallet fire a quarter mile from the Thunder Valley Casino sent columns of smoke into the air Wednesday morning.

Half a dozen engines responded from half a dozen fire agencies because of the potential spread to more materials and buildings on the property and to surrounding grassland.

Along with pallets, landscaping materials like wood chips and mulch caught fire. The fire was extinguished after several hours, but not before a five-inch water hose ruptured, sending three fire fighters to the hospital to check out minor injuries.

Cal Fire says mop up operations would take all day.

The triple digit temperatures caused fire fighters to work in shifts and visit hydrating and rest stations.

About 20 miles away in the Mt. Vernon Road area just outside Auburn more fire fighters attacked a wild land fire apparently started by a home owner using a riding mower. While many local resources were away on the Lincoln pallet fire,

“That had a huge draw down of our municipal resources, also water tenders and personnel," Cal Fire Battalion Chief Jim Mathias said.

But Mathias said pre-planning allowed them to mount a fire attack using two helicopter, an aerial tanker plane, water tenders, a bulldozer and multiple hand crews.

While four structures were threatened, non was destroyed. Mathias credited homeowners for clearing defensible space around their homes for the fact that there wasn't more fire damage.