Sacto 9-1-1
November 5, 2013
Pet oxygen mask used to revive cat at Citrus Heights fire

Rescued cat.PNGA cat survived a fire at at Citrus Heights home this afternoon thanks to pet oxygen masks donated to the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District earlier this year.

Fire crews responded about 4:30 p.m. to the report of a structure fire with visible flames in the 6600 block of Golden Rain Court. They arrived to find a fire in the garage of a single-story house.

Firefighters were able to confine the fire to the garage.

November 5, 2013
Attic fire damages Carmichael day care center

preschool fire.PNGChildren at a Carmichael day care center escaped injury this afternoon when a fire broke out at the facility.

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crews responded shortly after 2 p.m. to a report of a structure fire at Wee Tymes Playschool in the 2900 block of Root Avenue.

Ten children were napping when staff members were alerted to the fire by smoke detectors, according to a district news release. The building was evacuated without injuries.

October 29, 2013
Fire damages building on El Dorado County high school campus

Classes for students enrolled in cosmetology and dental programs were canceled today after a fire damaged a building housing the El Dorado Union High School District's Regional Occupational Program.

Administrators on the Shenandoah High School campus on Koki Lane in the community of El Dorado discovered the fire just before 9 a.m. today in the ROP cosmetology building and called the fire department, according to a district news release. No staff members or students were present at the time of the fire.

In addition to the cosmetology program, the Shenandoah site includes multiple buildings that house the district's Virtual Academy, ROP dental program and the AP computer science classroom.

October 28, 2013
Fire at Lincoln lumber mill quelled

A three-alarm lumber mill fire was extinguished last night in Lincoln.

The fire at the Sierra Pacific Industries mill in 1400 block of Lincoln Boulevard was reported by plant security personnel at 10:40 p.m. Sunday. The first-arriving crews found fire in a large mezzanine above a lumber-drying kiln.

A fire sprinkler system kept the fire from spreading until it could be completely extinguished by firefighters. Firefighters from Rocklin, Roseville and Placer County Fire/Cal Fire helped Lincoln Fire Department control the blaze.

The cause of the fire is under investigation. The blaze is estimated by Lincoln Fire Department officials to have caused $75,000 in damage.

October 28, 2013
Carmichael pizza place suffers fire damage

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District firefighters were busy overnight putting out fires at a Carmichael pizza parlor and southern Sacramento County mobile home.

At 12:10 a.m. today firefighters were called to Mark and Monica's Family Pizza Restaurant, 4751 Manzanita Ave., where fire in brush in front of the business had "extended into part of the structure," according to a fire district press release.

Crews limited the growth of the fire by quickly pouring water on the flames. Most of the building was spared from fire damage as 40 firefighters were able to bring the blaze under control within 45 minutes of arrival.

Damage was estimated at $50,000. The cause is under investigation.

Then, just after 2 a.m., Sac Metro fire crews in the south end of the sprawling district were called to a mobile home fire at 6435 Orange Ave., which is near Stockton Boulevard and Florin Road. Arriving crews conducted a search of the blazing mobile home to confirm everyone was out of residence.

Firefighting limited damage to the kitchen. An estimated $20,000 in damage was reported.

October 25, 2013
Man suspected of Rio Linda residential arson arrested

Sacramento County Sheriff's Department deputies have arrested a suspect in connection with an Oct. 19 residential structure fire in Rio Linda.

Arturo Leal-Avalos, 33, was arrested Oct. 22 on suspicion of arson, according to the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District.

He is accused of starting a fire that engulfed a residential structure in the 7500 block of Second Street.

Leal-Avalos is being held at Sacramento County Main Jail in lieu of $75,000 bail.

October 22, 2013
Fairfield man arrested in connection with Vacaville fire

A Fairfield man was arrested Tuesday on suspicion of arson in the Oct. 9 fire at the Mariani Fruit Packing Co. in Vacaville.

Vacaville police arrested Edward Burke IV, 20, following an investigation into the fire at the fruit packing plant. About 300 employees were evacuated from the plant as a safety precaution during the incident. Authorities later determined that the flames were sparked by three separate fires.

Burke, a temporary employee, had been working at Mariani for the last three months, according to Vacaville police.

Anyone who may have information related to this case is asked to contact
Detective Mark Ferreira of the Vacaville Police Department at (707) 449-5258.

October 21, 2013
Update: Downed power line caused Foresthill fire

A downed transmission line apparently caused a wildland fire in Foresthill and forced 2,600 residents and businesses in Placer County to go without power for several hours.

"We are working with CalFire on the investigation," said Paul Moreno, spokesman for PG&E

"It's looking like a downed power line caused that fire that also burned our utility pole. We're trying to determine what cause the power line to come down."

CalFire received a call at 3:46 a.m. of a vegetation fire burning near Spring Garden and Pine Mountain roads in Foresthill.

October 17, 2013
Fire sweeps through Rancho Cordova home but adjacent homes spared

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crews had to move fast to prevent fire spreading to adjacent residences when fire swept through a Rancho Cordova home today filled with debris and personal items.

When firefighters arrived at the blaze in the two-story home in the 2800 block of Hyannis Way at about 9:30 a.m., the residence was fully involved in fire.

Upon arrival, crews sprayed water on fire inside the home and began a search for possible residents. Nobody was found in the house, which had boarded up windows.

Neighboring homes were just a few feet from the structure. Firefighters worked quickly to extinguish the blaze.

While the interior of the home and contents were destroyed by fire, the house still stands and neighboring homes were spared. Cause of the fire is under investigation.

October 16, 2013
Rio Linda building heavily damaged by fire

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crews were able to save half of a building in Rio Linda hit hard by fire last night.

The fire was reported about 10:15 p.m. Tuesday at a construction company building in the 2400 block of Elkhorn Boulevard. First-arriving crews found flames at the front of the structure.

Crews immediately worked to extinguish the fire at the single-story building, limiting damage to half of the structure, according to a fire district press release. About 40 firefighters were able to bring the fire under control about 35 minutes after arrival.

A portion of the roof collapsed. Cause of the fire is under investigation.

October 15, 2013
Loomis house fire victim identified by coroner

The name of a man killed in a Loomis house fire over the weekend had been released by Placer County coroner's office.

He was identified as 65-year-old Thomas M. Jorgenson.

The house fire on Bankhead Road started in a converted garage about 5 p.m. Sunday, killing Jorgenson and injuring a younger man, officials said.

October 14, 2013
Prescribed burn with American Indian input today in S. Sacramento County

A prescribed burn at the Cosumnes River Preserve scheduled for today is being carried out by firefighters, academic officials and American Indians.

The project focuses on Plains Miwok burning traditions to achieve ecosystem restoration at the preserve in southern Sacramento County, and is a small part of a larger initiative involving indigenous stewardship practices, according to Don Hankins, field director, California State University, Chico Ecological Reserves.

The burn will be conducted east of Highway 99 between Cosumnes River and Dillard Road within the Costello forest.

Among those involved in the burn are the Plains Miwok, the California Indian Water Commission, CSU, Chico, preserve managers and the Cosumnes Fire Department.

October 13, 2013
Fire kills Loomis man, injures another

By Cynthia Hubert
chubert@sacbee.com

A house fire that started in a converted garage in Loomis has killed an adult male and seriously injured a younger man, officials said late Monday.

They did not disclose the identity of the two victims, who lived together and may have been father and son. The older man perished, said Chief David Wheeler of the Loomis Fire Protection District.

The fire, reported by neighbors, apparently started at around 5 p.m., generating thick smoke that rendered the two victims unconscious, Wheeler said.

October 10, 2013
Crews contain grass fire along American River near Howe Avenue

Parkway fire.jpgUtility crews have been called out to check for power line damage following a grass fire along the American River Parkway near Howe and Northrop avenues this afternoon.

Assistant Chief Niko King of Sacramento Fire Department said the two-alarm fire was reported at 3:26 p.m. in grass and brush on the north side of the river. He said eight engines were dispatched, and Sacramento firefighters were assisted by a dozer and helicopter from the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District.

Smoke from the fire was visible from the Capital City Freeway and Howe Avenue. King said the fire was reported by numerous callers but does not appear to be of suspicious origin. He said there were no reports of anyone seen leaving the area when it started.

It was contained after burning 5 to 7 acres, King said.

Smoke rises from a grass fire along the American River near Howe and Northrop avenues in this view from Glen Hall Park in the River Park neighborhood. Photo by Bill Lindelof

October 10, 2013
Kitchen fire displaces Arden Arcade family

While a family was away at a park, a kitchen fire erupted Wednesday afternoon in a Arden Arcade home, causing an estimated $50,000 in damage.

Arriving crews to the fire in the 2200 block of Shaw Street began searching the home to make sure nobody was inside. Other firefighters extinguished the blaze, limiting the spread of fire.

The cause of the fire is believed to be cooking-related, according to a Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District press release.

The American Red Cross provided housing for two adults and a child displaced by the fire.

October 7, 2013
Sly Park prescribed burn to take place over next few weeks

Cal Fire crews plan to conduct a prescribed burn at Sly Park to keep the recreation area and nearby subdivisions protected from wild fire.

Crews plan to burn brush, litter from conifers and bear clover from underneath trees. The burn areas are near the corner of Sly Park Road and Park Creek Road in Pollock Pines.

Vegetation burning will happen between 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. over the next few weeks.

Control lines will be in place and fire crews with firefighting equipment will stand by to maintain control of the fire. The effort will begin with a small test burn at the beginning of each day to ensure conditions are right.

If conditions are favorable, firefighters will ignite blazes around the perimeter, allowing a low-intensity, slow burn to consume fuels on the forest floor.

The use of a prescribed burn mimics the natural process, providing significant fire hazard reduction, according to Cal Fire.

October 2, 2013
New fire chief takes command in S. Lake Tahoe

Jeff Meston.JPGThe South Lake Tahoe Fire Department has selected a new fire chief.

A change of command ceremony was held in City Hall on Tuesday when interim Fire Chief Bruce Martin officially passed leadership of the department to new chief Jeffrey Meston (pictured)

Meston had a 30-year career in fire service and retired from the Novato Fire District. For the past seven years he has been in private consulting.

Meston has a Masters degree in Public Administration, certification as a Firefighter 1 and Firefighter 2, Driver operator, fire officer, chief officer and fire chief.

"We're thrilled to have him on board," said South Lake Tahoe City Manager Nancy Kerry.

October 1, 2013
Smoke detector credited with alerting Rancho Cordova residents to bedroom fire

Fire officials credited a smoke detector with alerting a couple in time to escape a rapidly spreading fire at their Rancho Cordova home Monday night.

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crews responded just before 10 p.m. to a report of a structure fire on Beclan Drive. They arrived to find a couple, senior citizens, outside the home where the fire was rapidly growing in a bedroom. After making sure that everyone was safely out of the house, fire crews were able to quickly extinguish the fire and prevent it from spreading through the house, according to a Fire District news release.

Had it not been for working smoke detectors, fire officials said, the couple might not have been alerted to the fire in time to safely leave the house. Early detection was especially crucial in this case because the woman is not ambulatory and relies on a wheelchair to get around. It took her husband extra time to help her out of the burning residence, fire officials said.

September 30, 2013
Antelope baseball snack shack burned by arsonist

A fire that heavily damaged a youth baseball snack shack in Antelope was set by an arsonist.

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District firefighters responded to the Antelope Little League Baseball Field about 2:30 p.m. Sunday where a fire had spread from a portable restroom to the revenue-generating snack shack and an equipment building.

First-arriving crews extinguished flames in the interior of the snack shack, while other firefighters worked to put out fire on the exterior and the restroom.

September 27, 2013
Loss in Yolo County hay fire estimated at $5 million

LS HAYFIRE 3.JPGA multi-million dollar hay fire that spread to barns and expensive agricultural equipment along Interstate 505 near Winters this morning is likely to burn for some time.

The fire was first reported at about 10:30 p.m. Thursday between Winters and Vacaville in Yolo County. The hay belonged to a company called Haykingdom, whose business includes super-compressing hay and shipping it overseas, fire officials said.

Vacaville Fire Protection District Deputy Fire Chief Doug Rogers said an estimated 100 to 200 tons of hay was consumed by the flames that lit up the night sky. The mounds of charred and smoldering hay continued to busy firefighters through the day Friday.

September 27, 2013
Public invited to sign up for Sac Metro workshops on wildfire hazards

The public is invited to attend a series of workshops provided by Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District on how to prevent damage to residential property from wildfires.

Metro fire was awarded grant by the Federal Emergency Management Agency to create a community wildland protection plan. A component of the plan is to provide public education and seek feedback from the public in the fire district.

The 12 one-day courses in "Assessing Residential Wildfire Hazards" and four two-day courses in "Assessing Wildfire Hazards in the Home Ignition Zone" begin Oct. 1 and run through Nov. 7.

The one-day workshops are offered in Rancho Cordova, Rancho Murieta, Rio Linda and at Fire Station 50 on Gerber Road,. The two-day courses will be held in Fair Oaks.

The workshops are designed to teach residents how to conduct an assessment of their property and suggest ways to help reduce wildland fire risk.

To register, go to http://metrofirecwpp.eventbrite.com/ For more information call (916) 859-4318.

September 25, 2013
Fire restrictions lifted in Eldorado National Forest

Fire restrictions are removed today in the Eldorado National Forest because recent rains have dampened terrain.

The wetter conditions have returned to the Eldorado National Forest just in time for Saturday's start to the deer hunting season, according to a forest service press release.

Still, Forest Supervisor Laurence Crabtree reminds forest visitors to build campfires in accordance with permit regulations.

September 24, 2013
Sacramento officer's grim discovery in warehouse district

An officer patrolling in a warehouse district of Sacramento came upon a burning body Monday night.

Sacramento police said that the officer saw an object burning in the 6000 block of Warehouse Way in the southeast part the city near Florin Perkins and Fruitridge Roads.

Upon closer inspection, the burning object was determined to be a body. Police have not said if the dead person was a man or woman.

While the department tweeted Monday night that homicide detectives were responding to the scene, a police spokeswoman said today that the case is being investigated as a suspicious death

September 20, 2013
Apartment fire claims life of Sacramento man

A man pulled from a burned-out Sacramento apartment Friday morning by firefighters has died.

The fire in the 600 block of Bowles Street was reported about 1:40 a.m. Firefighters from a nearby station extinguished the blaze and found the man in a bedroom.

He was transported by ambulance to UC Davis Medical Center where he was declared dead, Assistant Chief Scott Williams said.

The victim's name has not been released.

Cause of the fire near El Camino Avenue and Del Paso Boulevard is being investigated.

September 18, 2013
Fire discovered in attic of Roseville's Zocalo restaurant

Zocalo restaurant in Roseville was damaged Wednesday morning by a fire that was discovered burning in its attic.

Roseville Fire Department responded at 10:58 a.m. to a 911 call reporting smoke showing from the roof of a salon at the Fountains at Roseville shopping center. Upon further investigation, crews found an active structure fire in the attic of Zocalo.

Four fire engine and two ladder truck crews from the Roseville department along with units from Rocklin Fire Department were able to quickly extinguish the flames before the restaurant or building suffered significant damages, according to a Roseville Fire Department news release. The restaurant was closed to allow for cleanup activities.

No injuries were reported. Officials said the cause of the fire is under investigation.

September 18, 2013
Fire damages two apartment units in Carmichael

Two apartment units were damaged in a fire this morning in Carmichael.

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crews responded shortly after 11:30 a.m. to reports of a structure fire on Mary Lynn Lane. They arrived to find a ground-floor apartment and the unit above it engulfed in flames, according to a Fire Department news release. A team of 31 firefighters was able to control the blaze and prevent it from spreading through the large complex.

Capt. Jon Rudnicki said the fire started in the ground-floor unit and spread to the second-story apartment. Tenants of both units were displaced. Rudnicki said one is being aided by the Red Cross and the other by family in the area.

Neither residents nor firefighters were injured. The cause of the fire is under investigation.

September 16, 2013
Cause of Sunday grass fire in Roseville under investigation

Roseville grass fire.pngRoseville fire officials are investigating the cause of a grass fire that burned about 8 acres near Veterans Park North in the western part of the city Sunday afternoon.

Fire crews responded to a call at 4:22 p.m. and arrived to find a half-acre of dry grass burning in a field east of Fiddyment Road just north of Blue Oaks Boulevard. Crews, aided by lower temperatures and calm winds, were able to contain the blaze at just under 8 acres, a Roseville Fire Department news release states.

Firefighters were on scene more than five hours mopping up hot spots. The fire burned into a grove of mature oak trees, making if difficult to fully extinguish, fire officials said. Crews patrolled the area through the night and into today to make sure there were no flare-ups.

No structures were threatened or damaged, and no injuries were reported.

Photo courtesy Roseville Fire Department

September 13, 2013
Rim fire's rapid spread cited as cautionary tale for residents in Amador, El Dorado counties

As the Rim fire continues to burn in the Stanislaus National Forest, officials with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection in Amador and El Dorado counties say such fires could occur in their jurisdiction.

The Rim fire is burning in terrain similar to that found in Amador and El Dorado counties, and residents are advised to be prepared and not ignore the risk. Fire officials say people need to recognize how quickly a wildfire can spread.

"I imagine the residents of Tuolumne County never thought it could really happen to them, or that the Rim fire could have burned 255,848 acres -- 400 square miles -- in 28 days, but it has with ferocity that one seldom sees," Kelly Keenan, chief of Cal Fire's Amador-El Dorado-Sacramento Unit, said in a written statement. "With 80 percent of the fire contained, the third largest wildfire in the state's history is still spotting ahead of itself and causing Yosemite National Park to close four of its campgrounds and the Stanislaus National Forest to close two of its ranger districts, not to mention the road closures in the area."

September 9, 2013
Sac Metro snuffs out tree fire burning against apartments

An Italian cypress tree burning like a Roman candle threatened an apartment house in Arden Arcade this morning.

The narrow tree beside the apartment building in the 2600 block of Cottage Way was burning when Sac Metro crews arrived on scene about 2:20 a.m.

Flames extended up to the roof of the structure. Firefighters attacked the fire from the roof and the ground, while also checking for fire in the attic.

The fire was quickly extinguished. Damage was estimated at $10,000.

Cause of the fire is under investigation.

September 4, 2013
After 5,000 meals and 950 stays, Red Cross to close Rim fire shelter

With Rim fire containment near Yosemite at 80 percent, the Red Cross today will close its shelter in Sonora.

At the height of its use, on August 23, more than 180 residents stayed overnight at the shelter at the Mother Lode Fairgrounds. With residents returning to their homes, the American Red Cross has decided to close the shelter this afternoon.

"The work at this shelter would not have been possible without the tireless efforts of our volunteers and the tremendous support of the community," said Kathleen Weis, CEO for the Red Cross Capital Region.

Shelter facts since opening Aug. 19:

September 3, 2013
Progress reported on state fires; Rim fire 75 percent contained

Two good signs from the fire lines: The number of firefighters battling California wildland blazes keeps declining while the containment figure for the huge Rim fire is headed up.

Last week, when the Yosemite-area fire was only 30 percent contained, 9,300 firefighters were involved in battling 10 major fires in the state. Today, Cal Fire reported that 6,500 firefighters were still engaged in fighting seven fires.

Most of the fires are on federal land, but Cal Fire and local fire departments are helping out and making good progress. The progress was aided, in part, by cooler temperatures over the Labor Day weekend.

The Rim Fire is now 75 percent contained. With 235,841 acres burned, the fire is the fourth largest in recorded state history.

Fire incident information from Cal Fire indicates that 97 outbuildings and three commercial structures burned in the blaze that began Aug. 17. Officially, the wildland fire is still under investigation.

However, a Twain Harte fire chief told a community meeting that an illegal marijuana grow could have sparked the fire, the San Jose Mercury News reported.

September 2, 2013
Firefighters bring fire in Butte County under control; Rim fire at 60 percent containment

Bee Metro Staff

The California Department of Forestry and Fire protection reported Monday it has contained the 80-acre Centerville Fire in Butte County, one of seven wildfires the agency is fighting across the state.

The Rim Fire burning in an near Yosemite National Park is now 60 percent contained, with 357 square miles burned. It is now the 4th largest wildfire in California history.

Other fires in Northern California include the Forks Complex fire in Siskiyou County, which has burned more than 36,000 acres and is 45 percent contained. The Corral Complex fire in Humboldt County has burned more than 11,900 acres and is 41 percent contained.

August 30, 2013
Foresthill area's wildfire declared contained as Rim blaze continues to burn

Three fires that have raged in California this week were declared fully contained this morning.

The fires that are now 100 percent contained are the Deer fire in Tehama County, the Little fire in Riverside County and the American fire in Placer County. The American fire, northeast of Foresthill in steep terrain, burned 27,440 acres.

Progress continued to be made on the hard-to-fight Rim fire near Yosemite National Park. The fire, now recognized as the fifth largest in recorded California history, has now burned 201,894 acres, according to a press release from Cal Fire.

Firefighters have been able to get the blaze 32 percent contained through a combination of aerial and ground attack. About 8,300 firefighters are working throughout the state on the seven remaining large wildfires. Nearly 5,000 firefighters are battling the Rim fire.

Evacuation advisories for Tuolumne City, Soulsbyville and Willow Spring were lifted Thursday. The advisory remains in place for other communities in the area, and mandatory evacuations are in place along the fire's southeast edge, according the the Associated Press.

August 29, 2013
Rim fire near Yosemite is 30 percent contained

The Rim fire burning near Yosemite National Park is 30 percent contained, fire officials announced today.

The fire, the sixth largest wildland blaze in recorded state history, has burned 192,737 acres. With the expected return of warmer temperatures, fire officials say that full containment will not occur until Sept. 20.

Full containment of the Deer fire in Tehama County and the American fire in Placer County is expected today.

The Deer fire, 10 miles east of Los Molinos, has burned 11,429 acres. Placer County's American fire, northeast of Foresthill, has charred 26,194 acres.

August 28, 2013
Rim fire on list of state's largest blazes as fire crews make progress

glance.JPGFire officials say that progress is being made on the 10 major wildfires burning in California.

Meanwhile, the Rim fire near Yosemite National Park has grown to 187,466 acres and is 23 percent contained. It remains the 7th largest wildfire recorded in California.

Read more: Tahoe visitors, Sierra resdients endure smoky days as Rim Fire rages

The largest wildfires in state history as listed by the National Weather Service:

1. Cedar fire, San Diego County, 273,000 acres in 2003.

2. Rush fire, Lassen County, 271,000 acres in 2012.

3. Zaca fire, Santa Barbara County, 240,000 acres in 2007.

4. Matilija fire, Ventura County, 220,000 acres in 1932.

5. Witch fire, San Diego County, 197,000 acres in 2007.

6. Klamath fire, Siskiyou County, 192,000 acres in 2008.

7. Rim fire, Tuolumne County, 187,466 acres in 2013.

In Placer County, the American Fire northeast of Foresthill is 94 percent contained this morning, according to Cal Fire. The wild land blaze has consumed 26,000 acres.

The majority of the large wildfires are burning on federal land. Cal Fire and local fire departments are working in support of U.S. Forest Service firefighters.

Nearly 9,000 firefighters have been battling the blazes. About 4,200 of the firefighters are deployed at the Rim fire.

PHOTO CAPTION: While monitoring a controlled backfire along Highway 120 at the southwestern edge of California's Yosemite National Park, Captain Russell Mitchell with Yosemite Fire glances up as a U.S. Forest Service firefighting aircraft flies overhead on Tuesday, August 27, 2013. Don Bartletti/ Los Angeles Times

August 27, 2013
American fire reported 92 percent contained, mop-up under way

Firefighters today moved toward closing lines around the American fire in Placer County.

The fire, burning since Aug. 10 northeast of Foresthill, was reported 92 percent contained Tuesday evening with 25,520 acres burned. Full containment is expected on Thursday.

The number of personnel involved in the firefighting effort now stands at 1,082. One firefighter reportedly suffered a burned hand, and was treated and released, according to the online fire update by the U.S. Forest Service.

Officials reported that the southern portion of the fire area is cold, while ground on the western flank continues to hold considerable heat where hand crews and engines were conducting mop-up activities. Scattered smoldering pockets were reported in the northern section. Active fire was reported along the southwestern flank in timber and brush.

- Cathy Locke

August 26, 2013
Containment of American fire expected Thursday

Full containment of the American fire is expected Thursday, two days earlier than previously projected.

The U.S. Forest Service reported this evening in an online update that the fire, burning since Aug.10 northeast of Foresthill in Placer County, is 83 percent contained with 24,684 acres burned. A total of 1,283 people remain involved in the firefighting effort.

Officials reported that crews have completed burning operations next to Mosquito Ridge Road, along the fire's eastern perimeter. The burning was conducted to reduce ground fuels between the fire perimeter and the main fire to help prevent the main fire from escaping containment lines.

August 26, 2013
Fire near Yosemite is 13th largest recorded state fire

The Rim Fire near Yosemite National Park has grown to be the 13th largest fire ever recorded in the state.

The still hard-charging blaze that continues to threaten 4,500 homes, has expanded to 149,780 acres. The blaze northeast of Groveland, Tuolumne County, is just 15 percent contained and evacuations remain in effect.

Firefighters will continue to fight the fire from the air today. Smoke will be an issue with visibility less than a mile at some locations, fire officials said.

Cal Fire officials warn that winds again today will hamper firefighting efforts with gusts from the south predicted up to 26 mph. The winds are expected to push the fire to the northeast.

Closer to Sacramento, the American Fire, northeast of Foresthill in Placer County, has burned 24,408 acres. The fire is reported at 81 percent contained this morning.

About 9,000 local, state and federal firefighters are working to contain 11 major wildfires across the state. Fire officials made progress on the wildland blazes Sunday despite windy conditions.

August 25, 2013
Update: Firefighters contain El Dorado County blaze

By Janelle Bitker
jbitker@sacbee.com

A fire near Georgetown in El Dorado County is fully contained, according to Cal Fire officials.

The fire began on Saturday at approximately 3 p.m., just off Highway 193 and Empire Creek Circle. By noon today firefighters reported full containment of the 38-acre blaze.

August 25, 2013
More than 8,300 firefighters battling over a dozen blazes in California

By Tillie Fong

tfong@sacbee.com

Fourteen wildfires are burning in California, with more than 8,300 firefighters battling the blazes, the California Department of Fire and Forestry officials reported this weekend.

Winds from the south, with speeds of up to 25 mph and gusts as much as 35 mph, will provide the greatest challenge in the northeast portion of the state Sunday afternoon, as they will likely fan the flames of several wildfires, increase the fire potential in other areas, and hamper current firefighting efforts, CalFire said.

As of Sunday morning, CalFire listed the status of the wildfires in the state:

August 23, 2013
UPDATE: Rim Fire near Yosemite spreads to over 100,000 acres

The Rim Fire in Tuolumne County has devoured 105,620 acres west of Yosemite National Park.

As of Friday morning, the 6-day-old wildfire is 2 percent contained. More than 2,000 firefighters, including 60 from Sacramento Metropolitan Fire, are taming the flames. Multiple communities have been evacuated and a stretch of Highway 120, the main artery into the park, has been closed.

Two homes and seven outbuildings were destroyed along Packard Canyon Road, according to the U.S. Forest Service. Another 2,500 homes, hotels and camp buildings remain threatened along Ferretti Road, north of Highway 120.

August 21, 2013
Update: Rim Fire grows, Swedes Fire 90% contained

The Rim Fire, burning west of Yosemite National Park, continues to grow.

As of Monday morning, the fire has charred 10,170 acres, up from 4,400 acres on Tuesday morning. The out-of-control wildfire burning in remote, steep terrain near Yosemite is still threatening more than 2,000 houses, hotels and camp buildings.

The fire has destroyed two residences and five outbuildings, and about 2,500 structures were under threat in the nearby community of Groveland, the U.S. Forest Service told the Associated Press.

Communities along Ferretti Road are being evacuated, according to the U.S. Forest Service. An eight-mile stretch of Highway 120, Yosemite's main artery, remains closed. The fire is 0 percent contained.

In Butte County, firefighters are closing in on the Swedes Fire, which reached 90 percent containment overnight. Burning southeast of Oroville, the fire has charred 2,462 acres. About 1,300 firefighters remain on the scene, down from 1,500 on Tuesday.

The American Fire near Foresthill has reached 62 percent containment. The fire has burned 15,738 acres so far. Officials caution that growth potential for the fire is still high.

August 20, 2013
Fire rips through West Sacramento trailer

Fox40 reports a fire ripped through a West Sacramento trailer but four people inside got out safety.

August 20, 2013
Update: Butte County fire 75% contained; American Fire rages on

Firefighters in Butte County are making headway in the Swedes Fire, which is now 75 percent contained.

The Swedes Fire, burning southeast of Oroville, has charred 2,139 acres. About 1,500 firefighter personnel from local, state and federal agencies are taming the flames. All evacuation orders have been lifted, according to Cal Fire.

Near Foresthill, the American Fire continues to rage on, reaching 53 percent containment overnight. The fire now straddles 14,822 acres on extreme slopes and other rugged terrain. More than 1,800 firefighters are battling the flames. Officials expect full containment by Sept. 1.

Meanwhile, the smaller Rim Fire has closed an eight-mile stretch of Highway 120, the major gateway into Yosemite National Park. So far, the fire has burned 4,400 acres.

August 19, 2013
Update: Butte County fire consumes nearly 2,000 acres, American Fire 15,000

Firefighters battling flames in Butte County reached 45 percent containment overnight.

The Swedes Fire has burned 1,995 acres and threatens 400 structures southeast of Oroville. On Monday morning, Cal Fire reported one residential structure, one garage, three outbuildings and multiple vehicles destroyed. More than 20 streets in the neighborhoods around Swede Flat Road and Oro Bangor Highway have been evacuated.

Erratic winds and steep terrain make containment a challenge, Cal Fire officials said.. The fire's dynamic nature means evacuation orders can change rapidly, according to a Cal Fire report.

August 18, 2013
American Fire grows to nearly 13,000 acres; Swedes Fire threatens 700 structures near Oroville

Bee staff

Firefighters continue to battle the growing American Fire - on Deadwood Ridge eight miles from Foresthill - that has consumed nearly 13,000 acres, federal and state fire agencies reported this morning.

Besides the American Fire, the state's attention is focusing on a fire in Butte County in which 700 structures are threatened and evacuations are planned.

The American Fire is 45 percent contained, but its located in steep and hazardous terrain has made establishing perimeters difficult, officials said.

No populated areas are threatened, officials reported, but the heavy brush and other fuels have created large amounts of smoke, creating a significant issue for the Sierra foothills, Tahoe, and Sacramento Valley.

August 16, 2013
7 acres burn on parkway near site of earlier fires

A fast-moving grass fire on the American River Parkway in Rancho Cordova has been contained after burning about 7 acres.

Capt. Christopher Quinn of the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District said the fire was reported about 3 p.m. near the El Manto access off Ambassador Drive. No homes were threatened.

He said the fire was in the same general area as three other grass fires believed to have been deliberately set along the parkway in recent weeks. Investigators are trying to determine whether there are any links between today's fire and the earlier incidents, Quinn said.

August 16, 2013
UPDATE: Fire near Diamond Springs reported contained at 100 acres, home burned

The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection reports that a wildfire in the Diamond Springs area has been contained after burning 100 acres, including one residence and multiple outbuildings.

As of 4:30 p.m., fire crews were mopping up hot spots, and area residents who had been advised to evacuate earlier in the afternoon were being allowed to return to their homes, said Teri Mizuhara, a spokeswoman for Calfire's Amador-El Droado Unit.

The El Dorado County Sheriff's Office reported evaucation of the Lake Oaks Mobile Home Park and along Patterson Road in Diamond Springs due to the fire, which started shortly before 2 p.m.

Calfire reported that the fire began in the area of Koki Lane and Pleasant Valley Road, near Union Mine High School.

Sheriff's Department spokesman Lt. Tim Becker said people in the evacuation area were advised to go to the Firemen's Hall at 501 Main St. in Diamond Springs.

Placerville police sent out an email alert stating that students from Charles Brown Elementary School were being transported to Herbert Green Middle School, 3781 Forni Road, and parents were advised to pick them up there.

Mizuhara said fire crews will be going through the burned area to investigate the cause of the fire and assess the damage.

August 16, 2013
American Fire spreads to more than 7,000 acres

Overnight the American Fire raged on, burning 7,367 acres and bringing containment down to 31 percent.

As of today, an emergency closure order is in place for National Forest System lands within and adjacent to the fire. A map of the closed area is available at Tahoe National Forest offices and online at http://www.fs.usda.gov/tahoe.

The fire is located about 10 miles northeast of Foresthill, and last night the fire moved up Secret Canyon to Ford Point. Officials said the fire is likely to continue growing due to heavy fuels and steep slopes.

August 15, 2013
UPDATE: Mining structure destroyed as American fire burns 5,420 acres

The American fire continued to grow today, and one mining structure in a historic area has been destroyed.

The fire, which began Saturday afternoon in the Deadwood Ridge area northeast of Foresthill in Placer County, was reported 35 percent contained this evening and has burned 5,420 acres.

Jane LaBoa, a public information officer with the U.S. Forest Service, said the mining structure that burned was in one of the area's historic mining districts, but officials have not disclosed the specific location.

August 15, 2013
Update: American Fire burns nearly 5,000 acres, reaches 35 percent containment

smoke.jpgThe American Fire has burned 4,958 acres since Saturday, but firefighters are making a dent in containment - 35 percent as of Thursday morning.

Utah fire destroys 14 homes near resort town.

The fire is still moving in a northeasterly direction, but Jerry Westfall, spokesman with the Tahoe National Forest, said there is good news for further containment. Firefighters have formed a line west of Dead Ridge Road and another by Last Chance, he said. There have been no historical structures damaged, no evacuations and no injuries, and the personnel figure has remained at 873 since Wednesday.

Heavy smoke continues to impact visibility and air quality in the Sierra foothill, the Lake Tahoe area and the Sacramento Valley. An air quality warning was issued for Placer County on Wednesday, but Westfall noted that the smoke tends to clear up by the afternoon with wind. Large amounts of smoke in these areas is still expected for several days.

The fire began on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. roughly 10 miles northeast of Foresthill in the Tahoe National Forest. Westfall said that the forest service re-measured the location of the fire yesterday, concluding that 10 miles from Foresthill by air is a more accurate figure than the previously reported 17 miles by car.



PHOTO CAPTION: Smoke continues to drift into the Sacramento Valley from the American Fire. Fox40 video image

August 14, 2013
UPDATE: American fire grows to 3,950 acres, smoke prompts air quality warning

The American fire, which has burned 3,950 acres in the past five days, is reported 10 percent contained.

In an update this evening, fire officials reported that the fire continues to burn in heavy fuels, on very steep slopes, and access to the area is limited. The fire today was active on both the north and south ends, burning south to the Grouse Creek Trail and north up the drainage of the river drainage

No communities are threatened and there have been no evacuations. Firefighter continue to protect historic mining structures on the southeast side of the fire.

August 14, 2013
American Fire burning near Foresthill grows to more than 3,000 acres

By Janelle Bitker
jbitker@sacbee.com

The fire north of Foresthill grew from about 1,900 acres to 3,050 acres overnight. Firefighters said Wednesday morning the blaze is now 5 percent contained.

The American Fire in Placer County, which started about 4:30 p.m. Saturday on Deadwood Ridge about 17 miles northeast of Foresthill, continues to move in a northeasterly direction. Firefighters are working to protect the cultural resources at the historic community of Last Chance.

"Last Chance is still on the very edge of the fire," said Kathy Van Zuuk, Tahoe National Forest spokesperson. "We haven't lost any historical structures yet."

August 13, 2013
Update: American Fire north of Foresthill grows to 1,750 acres

fire.JPGJanelle Bitker

jbitker@sacbee.com

Crews continue to work to get a line around a fire that has burned approximately 1,750 acres in a heavily forested area north of Foresthill in Placer County.

The American Fire, which started about 4:30 p.m. Saturday on Deadwood Ridge about 17 miles northeast of Foresthill, has not threatened any communities and there have been no evacuations, according to an updated incident report today at 8:15 a.m. The fire is still moving north toward the historic community of Last Chance. Firefighters are working to protect cultural resources.

Forty people were added to the firefighting effort since Monday night, bringing the crew total up to 318 people. Multiple Forest Service and Cal Fire engines, air tankers, helicopters and smokejumpers are being utilized, with more resources on order.

August 12, 2013
Mobile homes on fire in Roseville

Two mobile homes, several cars and outbuildings are burning in Roseville.

At about 7 a.m., Sacramento Metro Fire and Cal Fire responded to reports of flames on Doolittle Drive. According to Cal Fire officials at 8:30 a.m., the fire was under control but still not contained.

Several gas lines are down, and crews have requested PG&E and SMUD. Officials said Red Cross was also requested

The cause is under investigation.

August 8, 2013
Apartment fire sends smoke through midtown Sacramento

fire.JPGAn apartment fire at 22nd and U streets sent smoke blowing through midtown Sacramento on Thursday morning.

Two upstairs bedrooms in a 1,000-square-foot apartment were scorched, according to fire officials. A cat died in the fire, but otherwise no one was hurt.

Three trucks and six engines responded to the fire around 7:30 a.m. The apartment was home to two residents - an elderly woman and her husband, said Chris Costamagna, Sacramento Fire battalion chief. Both residents were out and the son returned home to the apartment already on fire, he said.

Neighbors, seeing smoke billowing from the window, called 911.

The cause is under investigation.

fire2.JPG

PHOTO CAPTION: The scene of the fire at 22nd and U streets on Thursday. Janelle Bitker/Sacramento Bee

August 8, 2013
Cats rescued from burning Fair Oaks home

Firefighters saved five cats caught in a house fire in Fair Oaks on Wednesday.

Crews responded to a call about smoke coming from a house on Kifisia Way, near Greenback Lane, shortly after noon. While the house appeared to be vacant, neighbors told firefighters there were cats inside.

Not only were the felines rescued, but according to Sacramento Metro Fire, $300,000 in potential damage was averted. Firefighters believe something cooking that was left unattended caused the fire.

August 4, 2013
Firefighters fighting three fires in Eldorado National Forest

Firefighters were kept busy Sunday battling three fires in the Eldorado National Forest.

The Kentucky fire started at 11:45 a.m. Sunday off Blacksmith Flat Road. Five engines, one helicopter and one hand crew or roughly 40-plus firefighters have been working on the blaze, which had consumed two acres by mid-day Sunday.

"It is zero percent contained, but they were able to get a hose lane around half the fire," said Laura Hierholzer, fire information officer for the Eldorado National Forest.
"They are able to get water out to half the fire, so it's not progressing."

Not too far away, also in the northwest portion of the forest, 50 firefighters were able to contain 95 percent of the Volcano fire. That fire, which started at 3:15 p.m. Saturday off the Volcanoville Road, consumed 11 acres. Crews are eliminating hots spots.

August 3, 2013
UPDATE: Firefighters battle two Eldorado National Forest fires

Firefighters are working to contain two separate wildfires in the Eldorado National Forest.

The Baltic fire started about 7:15 a.m. today, burning 15 acres just south of Ferrari Mill Road, south of Pollock Pines. As of Saturday night, the fire was 75 percent contained. The area is undeveloped and doesn't contain any structures, according to Frank Mosbacher of the U.S. Forest Service.

Some of the fire crews moved over to the Volcano fire when it was reported shortly after 3:15 p.m. northeast of Georgetown. About 4 acres are burning off Volcanoville Road. As of Saturday night, the fire was 50 percent contained.

Helicopters, air tankers, engines and water tenders responded to the Volcano fire, which for a time threatened residential homes in the area. Mosbacher said residents who voluntarily left their homes returned by 8 p.m. A crew of 40 people are continuing to work on the fire.

Mosbacher warned that the site, with its dense trees and steep canyons, is prone to wildfires.

"Someday there will be a major fire in that area," Mosbacher said. "Luckily today wasn't that day."

The causes for both wildfires are under investigation.

August 1, 2013
UPDATE: Woman arrested in fire along American River Parkway identified

DEUTSCH, EVANGELINE-42.jpgA 42-year-old woman was arrested this afternoon on suspicion of arson in connection with a brush fire in the 500 block of North 16th Street.

Police said the woman, identified as Evangeline Deutsch (pictured), is homeless and was known to officers. She was booked into Sacramento County Jail.

Although today's fire, which began about 2:30 p.m., burned approximately an acre, a second alarm was issued because it was near businesses and an area of the American River Parkway where a fire last week burned 100 acres, fire officials said.

Assistant Chief Niko King of the Sacramento Fire Department said investigators have questioned Deutsch and are trying to determine whether she is linked to last week's fire. Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District officials also have been notified of the arrest, he said, in light of a string of grass fires that burned a total of 46 acres along the American River Parkway in Rancho Cordova last week.

July 28, 2013
Rancho Cordova grass fires suspicious, fire officials say

An arsonist may be to blame for a string of grass fires that burned a combined 46 acres along the American River in Rancho Cordova, a Sacramento Metropolitan Fire Department spokeswoman said today.

Investigators have determined that the fires, which burned near one another on different days, were not started by natural causes, such as lightning or sparks from machines, said Capt. Michelle Eidam, a spokeswoman for the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire Department. Because of this, they think one or multiple arsonists may have started the fires, she said.

"There's somebody in that area we want to catch," Eidam said.

The fires occurred over the space of three days last week near El Manto Drive in the American River Parkway.

Wednesday at 11 a.m.: Firefighters fought and extinguished a three-acre fire.

Friday at 2 p.m.: Two fires merged to form a 40-acre blaze.

Saturday at 9 p.m.: Fire crews battled a three-acre fire.

So far, no houses or people have been threatened by the blazes, Eidam said.

"Before anyone else gets injured, let's find them and stop them," Eidam said.

To report a tip in this case, call the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire Department's at (916)859-3775.

July 26, 2013
UPDATE: Parkway fire contained, burns 40 acres in Rancho Cordova

RC parkway fire.jpgFirefighters have contained a grass fire that burned about 40 acres in the American River Parkway, south of the river in the Rancho Cordova area.

Capt. Chris Quinn of the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District said the fire was reported about 2 p.m. The first crews arriving spotted what appeared to be two fires, one burning near the El Manto Drive access to the parkway, north of Coloma Road, and the other to the west, near the Rossmoor access.

Additional personnel and resources were requested, including a helicopter and dozers. Quinn said the fires quickly merged into one fire.

July 24, 2013
Fire officials: Defensible space protected homes from parkway fire

Fire officials say good defensible space helped prevent a fire on the American River Parkway from spreading to homes this morning.

Capt. Chris Quinn of the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District said that fire was one of two fast-moving grass fires crews responded to within hours of each other.

At 11:36 a.m., they were called to the American River Parkway off El Manto Drive in Rancho Cordova where a grass fire was burning near homes. He said homeowners had provided the recommended 30 feet of defensible space around residences, allowing firefighters to prevent damage to structures.

July 23, 2013
Dog rescued from Rancho Cordova apartment fire

Firefighters rescued a small dog from an apartment fire this afternoon in Rancho Cordova.

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crews were dispatched at 1:22 p.m. for a report of smoke showing from an apartment at 2081 West La Loma Drive. While en route, they were advised that a child might be unaccounted for at that location.

Firefighters arrived to find smoke showing from the doorway of a second-floor apartment and immediately searched the residence to make sure all the occupants were safe.

July 22, 2013
UPDATE: Person of interest named in house fire that left 2 dead


By Ben Mullin bmullin@sacbee.com

The Sacramento Sheriff's Department has named a person of interest in connection with a fire in southeastern Sacramento County that left a father and son dead on Monday.

Police are seeking Abraham Felmley, 32, who authorities said was seen driving a pickup truck that was discovered missing from the French Road home where the fire occurred. The occupants of the house were Chesley Felmley, 84, and his son, Dennis Porter Felmley, 64, said Daniel Felmley, another of Chesley's sons.

The familial relationship between Abraham Felmley and the rest of the family was not clear Monday night.

A man matching Abraham Felmley's description carjacked a Modesto fisherman at gunpoint at about 3 p.m. Monday, then smashed the man's cellphone, police said. The suspect may be driving the fisherman's green 1992 Toyota Camry, said Jason Ramos, a spokesman for the Sacramento Sheriff's Department.

Felmley is a parolee, Ramos said.

July 19, 2013
Wind-driven fire halted after threatening rural Sacramento County homes

Metro Jackson fire photo.jpgFire officials are reminding property owners of the importance of providing defensible space around buildings following a wind-driven fire that threatened homes in a rural area of Sacramento County this afternoon.

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire district crews were dispatched about 4:30 p.m. to a fast-moving fire in the area of Jackson Highway and Excelsior Road, south of Mather Airport.

Firefighters, including crews from the Sacramento Fire Department, were able to protect several homes in the area, and no injuries were reported.

July 19, 2013
UPDATE: Grass fire in Folsom-El Dorado Hills area contained

A grass fire south of Highway 50 in the Folsom and El Dorado Hills area is reported fully contained after burning 163 acres this afternoon.

Teri Mizuhara, a spokeswoman for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, said the fire was reported at 2:12 p.m. and appears to have started along eastbound Highway 50 near the Sacramento-El Dorado county line. Cal Fire, along with firefighters from the Folsom Fire Department and Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District responded. Fire crews and equipment are expected to remain on scene for several hours mopping up.

Mizuhara said a home on Winterfield Way in El Dorado Hills' Stonebriar subdivision suffered some damage after landscaping apparently ignited and fire spread to the fence and the outside of the house. She said firefighters on scene were able to prevent major damage.

Although there were no mandatory evacuations, Mizuhara said an advisory was issued for the Stonrebriar subdivision.

July 18, 2013
Arson suspected in fire that destroys Elk Grove High storage units

A fire that destroyed two storage garages at Elk Grove High School early this morning is being investigated as arson, according to Cosumnes Fire Department officials.

Fire units responded at 2:44 a.m. to a report of a fire near the high school's football stadium. Firefighters arrived to find two approximately 15-by-15-foot garages burning, with fire spreading to a third structure.

The fire started in or around the western-most garage and spread east to the second and later the third garage, according to a Fire Department news release. The fire was extinguished in about 15 minutes.

July 17, 2013
Unattended candle blamed for Arden Arcade garage fire

Edison Ave. fire.jpgAn unattended candle was blamed for a residential garage fire in the Arden Arcade area this afternoon that threatened to spread to the house.

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District units were dispatched shortly after 3 p.m. to a reported structure fire in the 3100 block of Edison Avenue. They found a garage fire that was threatening the home and anther property, according to a fire district news release.

About 25 firefighters responded and brought the fire under control within about 15 minutes.

On investigation, it was determined that the fire was caused by a candle left unattended by a juvenile living at the residence, fire officials said. When the boy became aware of the fire, he tried to extinguish it, but it was spreading too rapidly and a call was placed to 911.

July 17, 2013
Weekend fires lead to warning on outdoor equipment use

Fire officials are reminding people to be cautious when using mowers and power tools outdoors in dry vegetation and to check extension cords following two equipment-related fires in El Dorado County last weekend.

A home and an outbuilding were destroyed Saturday afternoon in the Placerville area when a person mowing tall dry weeds caused a wildfire that quickly spread to the structures, according to news release from the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection's Amador-El Dorado-Sacramento Unit. Residents of the home escaped with only the clothes they were wearing. Some of the family's pets perished in the fire.

A few hours earlier, a Swansboro family lost their shed, boat, horse trailer and Jeep when an extension cord used to power an electric fence caused a fire, officials said.

July 12, 2013
Tossed cigarette blamed for fire that threatened Fair Oaks homes

Fire officials say a discarded cigarette was to blame for a grass fire that burned fences and threatened homes in Fair Oaks this afternoon.

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crews were dispatched at 3:53 p.m. to a report of a fence and grass fire in the area of Bannister and Winding ways. The first units on scene reported that two homes were threatened and called for additional resources, according to a fire district news release.

Crews attacked the fire, which had moved from grass near the street and into the back yards of two homes, with trees involved. Firefighters were able to contain the fire before it reached the homes. Damage was limited to perimeter fencing and minor scorching of paint on an outbuilding, fire officials said.

July 12, 2013
Roseville police arrest teen on suspicion of arson

Roseville police have arrested a teen on suspicion of setting a grass fire Wednesday.

The 17-year-old boy was arrested on suspicion of setting the grass fire at about 8:30 p.m. Wednesday on then north side of South Cirby Way at Piedmont Way. Witness said they saw a boy light the fire and then run into a nearby apartment complex.

Firefighters quickly put out the small fire. An investigation is underway into the connection between the fire and other blazes, including a Maidu Park arson fire on June 21 that burned four homes and a gazebo and caused $1 million in damage.

Investigators believe that other juveniles are involved.

July 12, 2013
Man booked on attempted murder in Foothill Farms firebombing

Charles Hui McKenzie mugshot.JPGA fire department investigator arrested a man on suspicion of attempted homicide in an arson fire at townhomes in Foothill Farms last night.

Deputies and firefighters were called to the 5600 block of Hillsdale Boulevard about 9:30 p.m. Thursday where it was reported that someone had thrown a firebomb at a home.

Deputies were also told that a suspect in the arson attack was on the roof of a nearby residence.

July 11, 2013
Rancho Cordova garage fire complicated by downed power line

A garage fire in Rancho Cordova this afternoon resulted in a downed power line that fell across several homes and properties.

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crews responded to the 10400 Dolecetto Drive about 5 p.m. and found a growing garage fire. While firefighters tackled the blaze, other crews searched the area to make sure people were kept away from the power line, according to a fire district news release.

Utility company crews were called in to secure and repair the downed line.

The cause of the fire, which was largely confined to the garage, has not been determined, but officials said preliminary reports indicate it started near solar panels on the roof of the garage.

July 11, 2013
Forest Service reports Kyburz fire fully contained

The U.S. Forest Service reports that the Kyburz fire, which began Monday afternoon, is fully contained.

The Forest Service also released revised figures on the size of the fire, reporting a total of 572 acres burned.

The fire started at 12:41 p.m. Monday along Highway 50 west of Kyburz and snarled traffic through the Sierra as lanes were closed to accommodate fire equipment and allow crews to clear debris. The California Highway Patrol reported that the fire was caused by a blown tire on a vehicle.

July 10, 2013
Forest Service reports Kyburz fire 95 percent contained

The U.S. Forest Service reports that the Kyburz fire, burning for three days in the Eldorado National Forest, is 95 percent contained with 615 acres burned.

The fire started at 12:41 p.m. Monday along Highway 50 west of Kyburz and snarled traffic through the Sierra as lanes were closed to accommodate fire equipment and allow crews to clear debris. The California Highway Patrol reported that the fire was caused by a blown tire on a vehicle.

Highway 50 is open to two-way traffic, but motorists are advised to watch for debris on the roadway. Granite Springs and Webber Mill roads remain closed to the public, but the Forest Service reports that all campgrounds are open.

July 9, 2013
Three grass fires keep Roseville fire crews on the run

Roseville firefighters were kept busy this afternoon, responding to three grass fires, the first two of which started within 10 minutes of each other.

No injuries were reported and no structures were damaged, according to a Fire Department news release.

The first grass fire began about 2 p.m. along Linda Creek near Cirby Way and Rocky Ridge Drive. Because it was rapidly spreading, seven engines, 28 firefighters and a helicopter from the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District responded to the 3-acre fire.

July 9, 2013
Update: Kyburz fire 80 percent contained; Highway 50 is open

As traffic moved freely on Highway 50 this morning, fire officials said that they had succeeded in mostly containing the Kyburz fire burning since Monday in the Sierra Nevada.

Traffic began flowing again on Highway 50 through the Sierra late Tuesday after 24 hours of one-way controls due to the wildland fire west of Kyburz.

A fire update released this morning said the blaze, north of the highway in the Eldorado National Forest, was 80 percent contained with 615 acres burned. Firefighters only had 40 percent contained on Tuesday.

Crews are expected today to try to hold and improve the perimeter defense of the fire. Mop-up operations are also expected to begin.

July 8, 2013
UPDATE: Blown tire starts fire, closes Highway 50 in Sierra

By Tony Bizjak and Cathy Locke
clocke@sacbee.com

Highway 50 is closed to eastbound traffic at Pollock Pines and westbound traffic at Meyers due to a fire that is sending heavy smoke over the road, making it unsafe.

The fire, in a rural area between White Hall and Kyburz, has burned between 40 and 50 acres, according to the U.S. Forest Service, which reported that eight air tankers and five helicopters are being used to battle the blaze.

The California Department of Transportation announced that eastbound traffic is being held at Sly Park Road in Pollock Pines. Westbound motorists are being diverted at Meyers, with Sacramento-bound travelers advised to take Highway 89 to Highway 88 or Highway 89 to Initerstate 80. Caltrans officials said they do not know when Highway 50 will reopen.

The California Highway Patrol reported that a blown vehicle tire started the fire.

Caltrans is tweeting at @D3PIO.

July 1, 2013
UPDATE: El Dorado County fire contained, Highway 50 reopened

A wildland fire that shut down Highway 50 and knocked out power to thousands of Pacific Gas and Electric customers in El Dorado County late this afternoon has been fully contained.

Westbound Highway 50 through the Cameron Park/Shingle Springs area and one of the eastbound lanes reopened about 7 p.m. Daniel Berlant, spokesman for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, said the right eastbound lane remained closed because firefighters were working along the roadway.

Approximately 49,000 Pacific Gas and Electric customers in El Dorado County were without power after the utility, at the request of fire officials, deactivated power lines in the area to eliminate hazards to firefighters. As of about 7:30 p.m., PG&E spokeswoman Jana Morris reported that power had been restored to all but about 1,700 customers in the Cedar Grove and Pollock Pines areas. She said power was fully restored at 9:09 p.m.

June 25, 2013
Arden Arcade apartment blaze cause identified

An apartment resident awoke to find his kitchen on fire in Arden Arcade this morning, a blaze apparently started when the family left the stove on overnight.

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District engines were called about 5 a.m. to the Emerald Place Apartments, 1530 Fulton Ave., where they quickly knocked down the fire, containing it to the oven, stove, sheetrock and ceiling.

Fire officials said that cookware that probably had some food or food residue was left atop a switched-on electric stove burner overnight.

The resident told firefighters that he awoke to the smell of smoke. He saw the fire and the family of three adults and a baby ran outside.

Sac Metro said the fire could have spread to 19 apartments that share a common attic. Firefighters said there was no working smoke alarm in the apartment.

June 24, 2013
Dog down drain rescued by Sac Metro firefighters

photo (26).JPGA little dog found deep in a storm drain with a cable lock strapped around him was rescued by Sac Metro firefighters on Sunday.

The small dog was apparently forced down the storm drain, a witness told first-responders. Sacramento police gathered information regarding the incident.

Firefighters responded to a field at Power Inn and Calvine roads about 5:45 p.m. Sunday where the dog was trapped 25 feet into the drain.

June 21, 2013
UPDATE: Four Roseville homes damaged in Maidu Park fire

Four homes and a gazebo were damaged by a wind-driven fire that burned about 30 acres in Roseville's Maidu Regional Park this afternoon.

Assistant Fire Chief Jeff Carman said the Fire Department received a report about 2:25 p.m. of a fire in a nature area behind Maidu Elementary School on Johnson Ranch Drive. Children were reported to have been seen leaving the area, he said, leading to suspicions that the fire may have been set.

The fire spread due to heavy fuels and wind, growing rapidly to about 30 acres. Although damage within the park was limited to the nature area, five homes were damaged.

June 20, 2013
Two injured, outbuildings destroyed in Elk Grove grass fire

Two people suffered minor injuries in a grass fire in the Elk Grove area that burned a barn and several outbuildings.

Chief Tracey Hansen of the Cosumes Fire Department said the fire was reported at 1:42 p.m. on Pleasant Grove School Road, east of Bradshaw Road, between Sheldon and Bond roads. A tractor that was mowing on the property caught fire, apparently due to a mechanical problem, and the fire spread to dry grass.

The fire burned about three acres. Hansen said the firefighting was complicated because the fire ran between three or four parcels with outbuildings, tractors and cars. Several sheds were destroyed and a large barn was damaged.

June 18, 2013
Firebombing suspect booked into jail for Rio Linda arson

Billie Cooper.JPGA man was arrested on suspicion of homicide and various other charges for allegedly tossing a firebomb into a Rio Linda home last night.

Billie Lee Cooper, 50, (pictured) was booked into Sacramento County Jail on suspicion of attempted murder, arson, endangering the life of a child, possessing a destructive device and making criminal threats.

Sacramento County Sheriff's deputies were dispatched about 9 p.m. Monday to the 1000 block of Hayer Circle. Information suggested that Cooper was on his way to the address and that he intended to burn down the residence.

June 14, 2013
Fire official cites hidden perils in Elk Grove house fire

A firefighter suffered minor injuries Thursday night in a residential fire in Elk Grove that proved perilous for fire crews who discovered that roof supports had been compromised.

The Cosumnes Fire Department responded about 9:50 p.m. to a house at 8949 Adobe Valley Court. The house had been recently renovated and was vacant, awaiting the move-in of new residents, according to a Fire District news release.

Neighbors noticed a smell of smoke and, upon investigating, saw smoking coming from attic vents of the house.

June 14, 2013
UPDATE: Grass fire contained, traffic slow on Highway 99

The Cosumnes Fire Department reports that a brush and grass fire along southbound Highway 99, south of Eschinger Road, between Elk Grove and Galt has been contained. Traffic on the freeway, however, remains slow.

Return to www.sacbee.com for more details.

June 14, 2013
FedEx jet to absolutely, positively retire in Rancho Cordova as training aircraft

A retired Boeing 727 is making its last flight for FedEx today to Mather Field as it transitions into a new career as a stationary training aircraft for first-responders.

The cargo jet lands on a flight from Texas to Mather about 10:15 a.m. today where it will be greeted on the tarmac by arcs of water from fire engines as it finishes its last flight for FedEx. The delivery company selected Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District to receive the plane.

The donated aircraft will be used at the California Fire and Rescue Training Authority's Regional Training Center under development on Zinfandel Drive. Fire and police agencies from the Sacramento region and beyond will be able to train using the aircraft.

"It can be used by a variety of different agencies," said Michelle Eidam, firefighter and spokeswoman for Sac Metro Fire. "It can be used for fire rescue operations or for mass casualty incident training. Law enforcement can use it for SWAT training or canine training."

The aircraft will be moved around October to the training site. Eidam said the move will require modifications, but she did not know if wings would have to be removed or what the rolling route would be from Mather Field to Zinfandel Drive.

June 13, 2013
Placer County grass fire contained after scorching 237 acres

By Benjamin Mullin
bmullin@sacbee.com

Firefighters contained a 237-acre grass fire Thursday that was fed by dry conditions and wind gusts west of Roseville.

The fire burned along PFE Road between Watt Avenue and Walerga Road in Placer County earlier this afternoon. At 2:20 p.m., the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection announced that firefighters had completely contained the fire.

Cal Fire spokesman Daniel Berlant said firefighters had to call in additional help after the blaze threatened two homes. About 100 firefighters from several fire departments responded to the blaze, he said.

June 1, 2013
Explosion, fire reported at Elk Grove home

By Mark Glover
mglover@sacbee.com

Units of the Cosumnes Fire Department are on the scene of a reported explosion and fire at a two-story home in Elk Grove.

Officials said the fire began just before 7 p.m. in the garage of a home in the 9600 block of Glacier Creek Way, just north of Elk Grove Boulevard and Bradshaw Road.

The fire was reported to have been contained within minutes by fire crews.

May 31, 2013
Cal Fire way ahead in number of fires fought as windy weekend approaches

Cal Fire has responded to 90 percent more fires in the first five months of the year.

Since Jan. 1, Cal Fire crews have responded to nearly 1,900 wildfires across the state. Cal Fire typically responds to about 990 fires during the same time period.

Fires fought by state crews have burned about 45,000 acres since the first of the year, up from a typical year when 7,700 acres burn.

May 27, 2013
Fire damages home in Arden area

By Jon Ortiz
jortiz@sacbee.com

An Arden area home was damaged by a fire this morning that started in the garage and spread to the attic before Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crews extinguished it.

None of the four adults living in the home was injured in the blaze at 1209 Shadowglen Road, according to a fire department spokeswoman.

The department estimates the fire damage at $100,000 to the $200,000 structure, the spokeswoman said.

Through Twitter, the department said the cause seemed to be accidental, starting in the garage.

May 26, 2013
Rancho Cordova house fire kills two people, 17 pets

sacmetrofire 2.jpgA deadly house fire in Rancho Cordova early Sunday claimed the lives to two people and 17 pets, the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire Department said.

Fire Capt. Chris Quinn said firefighters first received a cell phone call at 4:06 a.m. today reporting a fire at the single-story house in the 10500 block of Georgetown Drive in Rancho Cordova.

When firefighters arrived, he said, flames were visible. They knocked the fire down within 15 minutes.

May 22, 2013
River Bend Park fire is contained once again

A stubborn 11-acre grass fire in River Bend Park that flared again this morning due to windy conditions has been contained by Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District firefighters.

Firefighters battled the blaze last night and were performing mop up duties this morning when the blaze along the American River erupted in brush and grass again. About 10:45 a.m. the fire was contained once again by firefighters.

A total of 19 engines and two water tenders responded to the park near Bradshaw Road and Highway 50. The park was closed this morning so that firefighters could put out the blaze.

May 17, 2013
Couple charged in 2010 arson of Antelope home

A couple were arraigned Thursday in federal court in Sacramento on charges related to the arson of their former home in Antelope.

Alexander Sakhanskiy, 39, and Larisa Sakhanskiy, 43, of Sacramento pleaded not guilty and each was released on a $50,000 bond, according to a federal Department of Justice news release. A status conference is scheduled for June 6 before Chief U.S. District Judge Morrison C. England Jr.

On May 2, a federal grand jury returned a five-count indictment charging the Sakhanskiys with arson to commit another felony, mail fraud, wire fraud and arson affecting interstate commerce. The indictment alleges that on May 22, 2010, a fire destroyed the couple's home, a single-family house at 5745 Hawkeye Lane in Antelope. The home was also being used as the business location of "Alex's Plumbing."

May 15, 2013
Afternoon fire damages two homes in Rancho Cordova

Two Rancho Cordova homes were damaged this afternoon in a fire thought to have started between the houses.

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crews responded about 4:30 p.m. to reports of black smoke and fire coming from a house on Azalea Garden Way, south of Douglas Road and east of Sunrise Boulevard. The person reporting the fire didn't know whether anyone was inside, according to a Fire Department news release.

The first firefighters to arrive searched the houses for occupants and began working to extinguish the fires. Their efforts were complicated by a compromised gas meter, officials said.

May 14, 2013
Man killed in Fair Oaks house fire identified by coroner

The Sacramento County Coroner's office has released the name of the man who died along with four dogs in a house fire on Monday in Fair Oaks.

He was identified as 64-year-old Ronald Burns.

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crews responded to the fire on the 4000 block of Main Street around 3:15 p.m. First-arriving firefighters reported heavy smoke and flames at the rear of the home.

May 13, 2013
Firefighter hurt, families displaced in two-alarm apartment fire

Bamford fire.jpgA Sacramento fire captain was injured this afternoon in an two-alarm apartment fire that displaced two families.

Assistant Fire Chief Niko King of the Sacramento Fire Department said several 911 calls were received about 3:38 p.m. reporting fire at an apartment complex at 5935 Bamford Drive in the Valley Hi area. Firefighters arrived to find heavy smoke coming from the units, and a second alarm was declared.

King said a mother and three children were in one of the two-story units, and a mother and two children were in the other when youngsters began screaming, alerting them to the fire.

May 11, 2013
UPDATE: Elk Grove firefighters quench blaze, discover marijuana-growing operation

Authorities have served a search warrant at the site of an apparent marijuana-growing operation -- a home that was destroyed by fire today, Elk Grove Police reported.

Elk Grove Police spokesman Officer Christopher Trim said a woman who drove to the home has been arrested. Authorities plan to search a second location, he said, and more arrests could follow.

The fire was reported shortly after 11:30 a.m., and firefighters from both the Cosumnes Community Services District Fire Department and the Sacramento Fire Department responded.

"As they were putting out the fire, they discovered signs of a marijuana-growing operation," Trim said. "They called us."

The home in the 6000 block of Laguna Villa Way appeared to have been a rental house, Trim said.

May 6, 2013
Cooler weather helping effort to quell California wildland blazes

Cooler weather has aided firefighters in the battle to control wildfires in California -- however CalFire is keeping an eye on the possibility of lighting-spawned blazes in the northern part of the state today.

In Ventura County, southeast of Camarillo, the blaze that has burned 28,000 acres is 80 percent contained. In Riverside County, at Highway 243, the fire that burned 510 acres is completely contained.

In the north state, a Tehama County fire, eight miles northwest of Butte Meadows, is 60 percent contained after burning 6,800 acres. The fire still burns in the Mill Creek and Deer Creek drainage areas.

In Glenn County, two miles south of Elk Creek, a fire that burned 217 acres is completely contained.

May 1, 2013
Sheriff's helicopter crew helps apprehend Placer arson suspect

A man suspected of setting a fire near the American River canyon this morning was apprehended by a Placer County sheriff's helicopter crew member as the suspect tried to leave the area.

A resident of Shirland Tract Road called 911 at 11:04 a.m. to report a brush fire in a neighbor's field. The woman also reported seeing a man jumping fences in the neighborhood, according to a Sheriff's Office news release.

A sheriff's lieutenant was the first to arrive in the area and he yelled at the man to stop. The man, later identified as Luke Carter, 24, of Vacaville, refused and continued to flee from the lieutenant, sheriff's officials said.

April 30, 2013
Wind-driven fires damage homes in Pocket area, North Highlands

One house was destroyed and another damaged in a wind-driven fire in the Sacramento's Pocket area this afternoon, just a few hours after a vehicle fire spread to a home in North Highlands.

Sacramento city firefighters responded about 4:30 p.m. to a fire at Souza Circle and Portugal Way in the Pocket area. Deputy Chief Lloyd Ogan said they arrived to find a single-story home fully involved and fire extending to a neighboring two-story home.

"It was definitely a wind-driven fire, and it was accelerating very quickly," Ogan said.

April 25, 2013
Permits required to burn residential debris beginning May 1

Amador and El Dorado County residents planning to burn debris on their property are reminded that residential burn permits will be required beginning Wednesday.

The permits are issued to the public free of charge and are valid for three years from the date of issuance. They allow for burning of dry vegetation -- not household trash -- that originates on the landowner's property, according to a news release from the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection's Amador-El Dorado Unit. The permits are available at most of the area's staffed fire stations.

Cal Fire officials remind residents that the use of burn barrels is no longer legal in Amador and El Dorado counties.

April 23, 2013
Vehicle fire spreads to two south Sacramento County homes

Two south Sacramento County homes were damaged this afternoon in what started as a vehicle fire between the two residences.

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crews were dispatched to the 8300 block of Turnbury Drive, east of Power Inn Road, about 3:38 p.m. regarding a report of a house fire with visible flames. As firefighters were en route, additional callers reported that the fire appeared to be spreading to another home, resulting in a second alarm requesting additional manpower, according to a fire district news release.

Officials said firefighting was made more difficult by gusting winds and a gas meter that was burning with unlimited amount of fuel.

April 10, 2013
Firefighters to search S. Sacramento rubble to rule out fatalities

house_fire_explosionA.jpgFirefighters this afternoon will sift through the rubble of a heavily damaged home in South Sacramento looking for the cause of an explosive fire - and to make sure there are no bodies in the rubble.

Two people were critically burned in the fire that erupted about 4:30 a.m. today on Herbosa Vista Court. Sounds of explosion were heard coming from the single-story residence.

Firefighters said two vehicles with lights turned off were seen speeding from the scene. Two burn victims were transported by private vehicle to UC Davis Medical Center about 30 minutes after the fire was reported.

Fire officials said they suffered second- and third-degree burns over 50-70 percent of their bodies, including on their hands, faces and legs.

March 25, 2013
Cooking fire damages Citrus Heights apartments

Two families were displaced after a cooking fire at a Citrus Heights apartment complex.

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crews responded to the 5800 block of Sunrise Vista Drive just before noon today and arrived to find a fire in an upstairs unit. The fire was largely contained to the kitchen area, with some extension into the attic, according to a fire district news release.

The second-floor unit where the fire started sustained the majority of the damage. The exterior of the unit suffered minor fire damage, and the unit below sustained water damage.

March 24, 2013
Man rescued from house fire dies later

A man died after fire blazed through his home Saturday morning.

The case has been turned over to arson investigators, officials said.

The house in the 6100 block of McLaren was in flames and filled with choking smoke when Sacramento Fire Department arrived shortly after 7 a.m., authorities said.

Three occupants in the home were able to escape the burning home, but a 67-year-old man in a rear bedroom was not able to get out. Firefighters rescued him through a side window.

Channel 10 news reports identified him as Charles Ellington, Sr. Ellington was transported to UC Davis Medical Center, where he later was pronounced dead.

March 22, 2013
Smoke detector alerts Sacramento County apartment residents to blaze

A smoke detector is credited with alerting residents of a Sacramento County apartment to fire in their dwelling.

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District firefighters were dispatched about 6:30 a.m. today to the 4900 block of Little Oak Lane, near Interstate 80 and Madison Avenue. A fire in an upstairs unit was threatening to extend into adjacent apartments when fire crews arrived.

Firefighters were able to keep the fire from spreading to other units by quickly putting out the blaze. A smoke detector alerted residents to the fire, allowing to residents to vacate the apartment.

March 16, 2013
Officials warn dry winter, warm weather increase fire risks

Due to lack of rain and unseasonably warm weather, fire season has come early this year.

Officials with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection's Nevada-Yuba-Placer Unit are urging residents to use caution when burning debris. Although spring doesn't arrive until next week, the lack of moisture and the increase in temperatures in recent days have quickly dried vegetation in many parts of Northern California, according to a Cal Fire news release.

Cal Fire officials say they have responded to a large number of fires this past week that were caused by escaped debris burns.

March 11, 2013
Orangevale blaze damages home of Metro Fire employee

fire.JPGThe home of a Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District employee and a recreational vehicle were heavily damaged by fire over the weekend in Orangevale.

Metro fire crews were called about 4:30 p.m. Saturday to Alterna Court on a report of smoke rising from a residence. Units heading toward the residence could see a large column of black smoke, growing in size, as they approached the address.

What crews found when they arrived, was a motor home well-involved in fire and an already-burning home. The recreational vehicle, parked alongside the residence, was destroyed by fire.

March 8, 2013
Sac Metro Fire rescues woman from burning apartment

fire.JPGA Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crew was able to enter a burning apartment through windows Thursday and rescue a person who was trapped inside.

Metro Fire was dispatched to the apartment house in the 5800 block of Sunrise Vista Drive near Greenback Lane and Fair Oaks Boulevard after a citizen reported flames and smoke from an apartment. The report also indicated that a person was trapped.

Upon arrival, firefighters saw heavy fire and smoke coming from a downstairs apartment, according Fire Capt. Kim Fong. Firefighters immediately began to extinguish the fire with water, while other crews preformed a search technique that is high-risk, but effective in quickly finding trapped victims.

March 1, 2013
Dogs rescued from Rancho Cordova fire by Sac Metro firefighters

dog rescued2.JPGSacramento Metropolitan Fire District firefighters today rescued two small dogs from a burning Rancho Cordova mobile home.

The dogs were last reported in critical condition at a pet hospital where they were transported after firefighters administered oxygen to the pets.

The first firefighters at the scene of the 10:30 a.m. fire on Redcoat Lane near Routier Road reported heavy smoke coming from the double-wide mobile home. Crews began to put out the fire and search for two dogs reported to still be inside.

Crews found the dogs, removed them to safety, and began resuscitation. No mobile home residents or firefighters were injured.

Fire damage was estimated at $25,000. Cause of the fire is under investigation.

PHOTO CAPTION: Firefighters administered oxygen to the pets. Sacramento Metro Fire

February 26, 2013
Auburn police book teen on arson charge after grass fire at school

Auburn police have arrested a teen for allegedly setting a grass fire at a school.

The grass fire set on September 18 also damaged some planters and a lattice structure at Skyridge School, 800 Perkins Way, police said.

A school resource officer on Monday arrested the 14-year-old boy for setting the fire. Police said the teen showed remorse and confessed to events that led up to the fire.

He was booked into Placer County Juvenile Hall on suspicion of arson and other unrelated charges.

February 26, 2013
Metro Fire halts spread of garage fire in Rio Linda

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crews last night worked to put out a garage fire in Rio Linda, preventing spread of the blaze to the living quarters of a home.

Firefighters were called about 7:30 p.m. to the residence in the 6900 block of Shady Woods Way where a garage was burning. Crews attacked the blaze from the garage side door, extinguishing the fire.

Some firefighters also made a search of the home to make sure the residence was empty.

The garage sustained significant damage, according to a fire department press release. A malfunctioning clothes dryer in the garage was suspected to have caused the fire.

February 25, 2013
SacMetro fights three apartment house fire overnight

Sacramento Metropolitan fire district personnel responded to three separate apartment house blazes last night.

The first occurred about 4 p.m. in the 2500 block of Edison Avenue in Arden Arcade, the second an hour later in the 3800 block of Little Rock Drive near Antelope Road and the third began at around 8 p.m. in the 4900 block of Little Oak Lane in North Highlands.

The fire on Edison Avenue involved an apartment oven. It was contained to the kitchen, according to a fire department spokesman.

February 21, 2013
Boy, 12, credited with saving family, aiding firefighters

A 12-year-old boy who put into practice the fire safety lessons learned in school is credited with saving his family and assisting firefighters.

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crews were dispatched to a structure fire at 11:30 this morning in the 6200 block of Watt Avenue in North Highlands.

While firefighters were en route, the youth, Edward Tapia, got his family safely out of the house.

February 19, 2013
Arson in garage at Woodland home under investigation

Woodland police and fire officials are investigating as arson a fire that damaged a garage at a home this morning.

Officers were dispatched about 7 a.m. to a residence in the 1400 block of Crystal Springs Drive for a report of arson. It was determined that sometime Sunday evening or early this morning an incendiary device was placed in the garage, according to a Police Department news release.

The device completely burned a car in the garage and caused moderate damage to the garage itself, police said.

Anyone who witnessed the incident or has information regarding the case is asked to call the Woodland police Department at (530) 661-7800.

February 12, 2013
Fire damages garage and attic of Folsom home

fire.JPGA blaze at a home in Folsom on Monday caused an estimated $250,000 in damage, according to fire officials.

The fire at the two-story home in the 200 block of Singer Lane is still under investigation. Damage was limited to the garage and attic of the residence, according to a Folsom Fire Department press release.

The first firefighters arrived at the burning home between four and five minutes after the first 911 call. The garage was fully involved in flames and smoke when crews got to the two-alarm blaze.

PHOTO CREDIT: Folsom Fire Department

February 2, 2013
Fire was set to cover up Sacramento homicide, police say

Norwood Avenue.jpegSacramento police said they are investigating the death of 32-year-old Patrick Kendrick as a homicide after his body was discovered Friday in an apartment fire on Norwood Avenue.

"It appears to be a homicide due to the obvious signs of trauma to his upper body," said police spokesman Officer Doug Morse. "The fire appears to have been set to cover up the homicide."

Sacramento police were called to the scene of the fire Friday morning at about 10 a.m. in the 3700 block of Norwood Avenue after firefighters discovered Kendrick's body inside an apartment that had been engulfed in flames.

January 28, 2013
Garamendi to inspect fire damage at Beale

Rep. John Garamendi, D-Fairfield, this afternoon will inspect heavy fire damage sustained earlier this month to a large building at Beale Air Force Base near Marysville.

An estimated $10 million in damage was caused to the 38,000-square-foot Civil Engineering Squadron Building, when fire swept through the structure Jan. 21. Because it was the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, the building was largely empty of personnel, limiting the chance of fire injury.

One person was in the building at the time of the fire's beginning. That person safely got out.

January 24, 2013
UPDATE: Investigators say Maita Nissan fire started during gasoline theft

A fire that heavily damaged three vehicles at a car dealership in Arden Arcade was caused by someone stealing gasoline, according to fire officials.

Fire crews were summoned shortly after 4 a.m. today to Maita Nissan at 2820 Auburn Blvd., where three vehicles were burning. A fourth vehicle suffered radiant heat damage.

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crews put out the fire and prevented its spread to neighboring Skip's Music store.

Arson investigators determined that an explosion occurred while gasoline was being stolen from the vehicles.

Anyone with information regarding the fire is asked to call the Metro Fire Arson Tip Line at (916) 859-3775.

January 22, 2013
Woman reported critically injured in Arden Arcade kitchen fire

A woman was taken to a hospital in critical condition this morning following a kitchen fire at an Arden Arcade residence.

Sacramento Metropolitan fire crews responded to the 2800 block of Joseph Avenue at 8:48 a.m. The first units to arrive reported heavy smoke coming from the front door and began to fight the fire while searching for victims. A man was helped out of the house, and a woman was located in a back bedroom, according to a Fire District news release.

The woman had suffered burns and was transported to the UC Davis Medical Center's burn unit. The man was not injured.

January 22, 2013
North Highlands dog helps humans rescue buddy down the canal

buddy.jpgA dog alerted his owner last night that his canine buddy was trapped in a North Highlands drainage canal.

The escapade began shortly before midnight at a home on Shell Street in North Highlands. The resident was startled by the sounds of barking in the backyard.

There, the resident noticed a hole in the fence and one of his dogs barking and frantically going in and out of the hole.

"He was kind of like Lassie," said Sac Metro firefighter Rashawn Fulcher.

On the other side of the fence, the dog owner discovered his other dog, an older Akita named RJ, in a predicament.

RJ had gone through the hole and down a steep-walled drainage canal. He could not get back up.

The owner called on Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District for a helping hand. Once at the dry canal, the firefighters went to ditch drainage exit and walk to the dog.

The dog was then led out to safety by the crew of Engine 42 led by Capt. Jason Wenner. Firefighters then further assisted the homeowner by repairing the fence.

PHOTO CAPTION: RJ and his owner with a Sac Metro firefighter.

January 22, 2013
Beale blaze heavily damages building

fire2.JPGA fire has destroyed a large building at Beale Air Force Base near Marysville.

The Civil Engineering Squadron Building was gutted by a fire that broke out about 2:30 p.m. Monday. Because it was the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, the building was largely empty of personnel, limiting the chance of fire injury.

On person was in the building at the time of the fire's beginning. That person safely got out.

Beale Air Force Base firefighters and crews from Linda and Wheatland responded to the blaze to extinguish the fire, which was still sending up smoke this morning. One firefighter suffered minor injury fighting the blaze.

The cause of the fire has not been determined, according to a base press release.

PHOTO CAPTION: Beale Air Force Base firefighters and crews from Linda and Wheatland extinguish the fire. Courtesy Beale Air Force Base

January 11, 2013
Arden Arcade fire prompts advice on multiple smoke alarms

A fire in Arden Arcade sheds light on the importance of smoke alarms mounted in hallways.

At about 7:30 a.m. Thursday, Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District firefighters responded to a home in the 3100 block of Edison Avenue where a backyard patio structure fire was spreading into a house. The fire was quelled by firefighters.

Before firefighters arrived, aan unidentified citizen driving by the house noticed the flames and pounded on the front door. The resident inside, hearing the pounding, opened her bedroom door to encounter smoke in the house.

The smoke then set off a detector in her bedroom. She escaped without injury.

"Metro Fire would like to remind all residents that properly placed smoke detectors in both the hallways and bedrooms are extremely important," stated a fire district press release.

January 8, 2013
Locomotive fire extinguished in Antelope

Fire crews successfully extinguished a fire on a burning locomotive early this morning in Antelope.

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crews were called at 3:30 a.m. to Antelope and Roseville roads where a locomotive train engine was on fire.

Crews were immediately faced with three concerns: putting out the fire, stopping its spread to a nearby train car containing a substance initially unknown to firefighters and preventing a spill of hazardous waste into the soil.

January 5, 2013
Citrus Heights couple escapes blaze started by unattended fire in fireplace

A Citrus Heights couple awoke early this morning after an unattended fire in their fireplace caused a raging fire in the home's attic.

The couple escaped injury, but half of the Peoria Drive home was damaged in the fire, according to a Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District news release.

The first arriving firefighters were met with 30- to 40-foot flames. It took 24 firefighters to extinguish it.

Metro Fire officials say the fire is a reminder of the dangers of leaving a fire unattended in a fireplace, and want to remind people to never close the damper when there are hot ashes in the fireplace. According to the news release, a closed damper will help the fire heat up again and force carbon monoxide into the home.

December 31, 2012
Fire-damanged Mikuni restaurant stays closed for repairs

A spokeswoman for a popular sushi restaurant closed after a weekend fire says the eatery plans to reopen at its Hazel Avenue location as soon as possible.

An fire early Saturday at Mikuni Sushi in Fair Oaks, where the restaurant chain began, was doused by the building's sprinkler system, but not before causing in excess of $50,000 in damages. The restaurant has been closed since.

"Our intent is to get everybody working as soon as we can," said Jeanne Mabry, a spokeswoman for the restaurant. She said the damage assessment has been slowed by the holidays, but that restaurant could be open in three weeks.

Mabry said the fire department pegged the damage at $50,000, but that the damage figure was likely higher.

December 26, 2012
Man sentenced to four years in prison for Carmichael arsons

Morgan McGinn image007 (4).jpgAn 18-year-old man who admitted starting numerous fires in the Carmichael area has been sentenced to four years in state prison.

Morgan McGinn (pictured) admitted starting 15 fires during August and September, according to a Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District news release.

He was arrested Oct. 1 by arson investigators and charged with five counts of arson and two counts of felony burglary. He pleaded no contest Dec. 20 to one count of arson, according to Sacramento Superior Court online records.

December 26, 2012
Cat perishes in Arden-area fire traced to oil-soaked rags

Rags soaked in linseed oil have been identified as the cause of an early morning fire at an Arden-area home that claimed the life of a pet cat.

A resident of the 2800 block of Becerra Way was awakened about 4 a.m. by a crackling sound, and when she went into the kitchen, she saw a glow coming from the garage, according to a Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District news release.

The woman awakened the other resident of the home, and both were able to get out of the house and call 911.

December 12, 2012
Child escapes early morning fire traced to space heaters

Fire officials are urging caution when using space heaters after a 6-year-old boy narrowly escaped injury in a fire at his North Highlands home early this morning.

The boy was asleep about 1 a.m. in a room that had been converted from a garage in the 3600 block of McClellan Drive, with heat provided by two electric space heaters plugged into back-to back extension cords. Two adults were inside the house watching TV, unaware that the space heaters had overloaded the extension cords and started a fire, according to a Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District news release.

When the boy's parents returned home, they smelled smoke in the house and found the couch in the room engulfed in flames. The father carried his son to safety while others tried to put out the fire.

December 12, 2012
Carmichael house fire traced to motorcycle repair

Motorcycle repair is the apparent cause of a fire in Carmichael.

Sac Metro fire crews were alerted to the fire about 4 p.m. Tuesday on Oak Stream Court, where a vehicle was reported on fire in a garage. When crews arrived five minutes later, they attacked the intensifying fire and searched for any trapped residents.

Eventually, the fire spread into the attic and part of the second floor, flames extending from eaves toward the house next door.

December 10, 2012
Smoke alarm alerts South Sacramento County family to fire

A smoke alarm did the trick on Sunday, alerting a South area family that a fire inside their home was building in intensity.

The fire in a home on the 8400 block of Cassatt Way about 2 p.m. Sunday began in a master bedroom closet. The residents were home but not in the master bedroom when the smoke alarm sounded.

"We always tell people that smoke alarms save lives," said Sac Metro Battalion Chief Rick Griggs. "They really do. This family was actually home with a fire building upstairs, and had no idea until their smoke alarm alerted them to the danger."

November 30, 2012
Preliminary findings show nothing criminal in South Area fire death

A preliminary investigation failed to find anything criminal in the death of a woman whose body was found in a burned South Sacramento County duplex on Thursday.

Pending a coroner's autopsy and a fire department investigation, there was no "criminality" involved said Sgt. Jason Ramos with the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department.

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District firefighters were called to the duplex in the 5400 block of Sky Parkway about 2 p.m. Thursday. A citizen reported that flames were coming from one unit in the duplex.

November 29, 2012
Two people injured in Foothill Farms apartment complex fire

Two people were transported to an area hospital with injuries suffered during a two-alarm fire tonight that damaged eight apartment units in the Foothill Farms area.

Firefighter Michelle Eidam, spokeswoman for the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District, said crews were called to the apartment complex at 5101 Hackberry Lane, just south of Madison Avenue, at 5:37 p.m.

The fire started in the kitchen of an apartment, where a man was cooking and spread into a breezeway that provides access to four upstairs units.

November 22, 2012
Fire burns hydroelectric plant near Oroville

A massive fire burned Thursday in one of the hydroelectric generating units connected to Oroville Dam on the Feather River.

The fire began at 7 a.m. Thursday in the Thermalito Pumping-Generating Plant, downstream of Oroville Dam at Thermalito Forebay.

No one has been injured in the fire, which is believed to have started in the control room, said CalFire Capt. Keith Castillo.

Damage is likely to be extensive to the equipment in the building and the structure itself, said Ted Thomas, a DWR spokesman.

No power outages are expected, nor any water shortages for customers of the State Water Project.

-- Matt Weiser

November 19, 2012
Two die in Pilot Hill house fire

Two people died last night in a fire that destroyed an old house in Pilot Hill.

The fire was reported at 4531 Salmon Falls Road at about 6 p.m. Sunday. An El Dorado County Fire District engine from Cool responded in seven minutes to the single-family home engulfed in fire.

Firefighters tried to enter the home but could not because of the flames. Neighbors told them that two people were inside the home, which investigators said was about a century old.

November 9, 2012
Another electrical fire prompts warning from Sac Metro Fire

The third fire traced to electrical problems in 30 days has prompted a suburban fire district to caution homeowners about doing electrical repairs themselves.

On Thursday at about 3:30 p.m. Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District firefighters were called to the 8100 block of Dunes Court, near Highway 99 and Calvine Road, where a garage was engulfed in flames. Crews stopped the fire from spreading into the home and also rescued the family dog and cat.

The residents of the home were away at the time of the fire. Arson investigators determined "the cause to be electrical in nature," according to a fire district press release.

November 6, 2012
Two people injured in Arden-Arcade apartment fire

Investigators were working today to determine the cause and origin of a Monday night apartment complex fire in Arden-Arcade area that critically injured one person and displaced residents of a 14-unit building.

Firefighter Michelle Eidam, spokeswoman for the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District, said the two-alarm fire was reported at 11:29 p.m. in the 2700 block of Castle Hill Court, east of Fulton Avenue and north of El Camino Avenue. Crews arrived to find a fire burning in second story units of a two-story building.

Eidam said two people were injured. Firefighters rescued a man from one unit and he was taken to UC Davis Medical Center in critical condition. Eidam said a woman was also treated at the scene for minor injuries.

October 26, 2012
Woman, two dogs die in Citrus Heights mobile home park blaze

A fire in a Citrus Heights mobile home park claimed the life of a female resident early Friday morning.

The unidentified woman was found dead, along with two small dogs, inside a recreational vehicle at the Auburn Vista Mobile Home Park at 7721 Auburn Blvd., when Sacramento Metro firefighters arrived on the scene about 2:30 a.m., said Battalion Chief Patrick Ellis.

Ellis said the RV was apparently the woman's home.

October 12, 2012
Electrical problem blamed for Orangevale mobile home fire

ovalefire image005 (1).jpgFire officials say an electrical problem appears to have caused a fire that damaged a mobile home in Orangevale this morning.

Shortly after 8 a.m., an elderly resident of the mobile home at 9340 Orangevale Ave. heard a "pop" in the back bedroom that was followed by fire, according to a Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District news release.

Fire crews responded to a report of heavy smoke and found a fire in the rear section of the mobile home.With residents safely outside the home, firefighters worked to keep the fire from spreading to neighboring homes. Officials said the fire was quickly brought under control and confined to back section of the home.

No injuries were reported.

Damage from the fire was estimated at $20,000.

Photo courtesy Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District

October 11, 2012
Controlled burn near Elk Grove today

A controlled grassland burn may be noticeable by Elk Grove residents today.

Federal and local firefighters will be burning up to 37 acres of grassland within the Stone Lakes National Wildlife Refuge. The burn will take place south of Elk Grove, north of Lambert Road and about a mile west of Interstate 5.

Smoke should quickly dissipate, according to a press release from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The burn helps with firefighter training, reduces high grass fire danger and improves wildlife habitat.

October 5, 2012
South Lake Tahoe man arrested for trailer park blaze

A South Lake Tahoe man was being held on $1 million bail after he was arrested in connection with a trailer fire last night.

Firefighters responded to the fire at the trailer park on James Avenue in South Lake Tahoe about 11:20 p.m. Thursday. As firefighters extinguished the flames in one trailer, police officers evacuated neighboring units.

A resident of the burning trailer stated she was awakened by heavy smoke and was able to exit before the fire spread to the front door. She told police she didn't know if her roommate, Eric Almdale, was able to save himself.

October 4, 2012
Afternoon fire damages south Sacramento County home

Colonsay Way fire image004 (4).jpgA fire caused an estimated $100,000 damage to a south Sacramento County home this afternoon.

Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District crews were called to the area of Montevina Drive and Westray Way west of Waterman Road shortly after 12:30 p.m. regarding a report of black smoke coming from a residence. The fire was a few of blocks away, in the 9200 block of Colonsay Way.

Firefighters found the attic and roof on the north side of the residence on fire but were able to quickly contain the blaze to that section of the residence, according to a district news release.

October 1, 2012
Arson investigators arrest man in string of Carmichael fires

Morgan McGinn image007 (4).jpgAn 18-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of arson and burglary in connection with a series of fires that occurred in Carmichael during August and September.

Members of the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District's arson unit this morning arrested Morgan McGinn (pictured), who admitted to starting 15 fires, according a district news release. He is accused of five counts of felony arson and two counts of felony burglary.

Officials said McGinn admitted to arson investigators that he was responsible for starting fires Aug. 17 at the Phoenix Preschool, 2921 Garfield Ave., and in debris at the Loma Linda Apartments, 5545 Marconi Ave.; Aug. 18 at the Marconi Montessori School, 5619 Marconi Ave., and the Carmichael Library, 5600 Marconi Ave.; Sept. 23, at the Carmichael Presbyterian Church, 5645 Marconi Ave., and at a vacant house at 5645 Myrtle Lane. He also admitted to attempted arson of an occupied structure at an undisclosed address and to eight additional fires that are under investigation, officials said.

September 20, 2012
Update: Gloria Drive apartment fire controlled after woman jumps to safety

Firefighters have gained control of a two-alarm fire at an apartment house on Gloria Drive near 43rd Avenue in south Sacramento this morning.

The fire, affecting four units, two downstairs and two upstairs, broke out around 7:30 a.m.

Firefighters have searched the apartments. There had been an early report of somebody trapped in one unit, a Sacramento City Fire Department official reported.

One woman was trapped on a second floor balcony and was forced to jump. She was transported to the hospital for treatment of her injuires.

September 19, 2012
Light rail to Folsom restored after broken insulator, grass fire

Light rail cars to Folsom were back on track this morning after a broken insulator caused a disruption of passenger train service Tuesday afternoon.

About 2 p.m. Tuesday service was interrupted on the line between the Sunrise and Historic Folsom stations. Buses were called upon to ferry train passengers around the problem.

A Regional Transit official said an insulator broke and caused an electrical wire to fall. A resulting fire burned more than 6 acres. About 50 firefighters battled the blaze for about an hour before controlling it.

September 16, 2012
Placerville's 'Rock Fire' is 60 percent contained, officials say

By Loretta Kalb
lkalb@sacbee.com

A wildfire near the hairpin turn where Highway 193 meets Rock Creek Road has burned 45 acres north of Placerville and is 60 percent contained, a battalion chief for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said today.

Battalion Chief Julie Hutchinson said no structures were threatened in the Rock Fire, which started shortly before 5:30 p.m. Saturday and burned in a northerly direction. The fire has burned mainly brush land north of Placerville and the Chili Bar Reservoir and south of Georgetown.

September 14, 2012
Possible Antelope arson under investigation

Firefighters are investigating a possible arson in Antelope this morning after putting out a home fire, Sacramento Metro Fire District officials said.

At 2:53 a.m., firefighters received a call of a house fire at 7858 Caber Way. Firefighters saw smoke coming from the house and knocked on the front door. The door was locked and nobody answered, causing firefighters to force entry.

When searching through the house, nobody was found inside.

Firefighters put out multiple fires located in the attic and the hallway of the house.

The fire is currently under investigation.

September 8, 2012
Suspicious fire burns vacant Citrus Heights home

Officials are investigating a suspicious fire that erupted this morning at a vacant house in Citrus Heights, the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District said.

Firefighters responded just before 8 a.m. to heavy smoke and flames pouring from a home at 6921 Birchwood Circle, according to a news statement. Crews discovered the house was vacant and extinguished the fire, which burned into the attic and attached garage.

Investigators said frequent squatters were reported at the house. One witness described a man in his 30s with a beard leaving the scene on a bike and pulling a trailer just before the fire was reported.

Anyone with information about the case is urged to call the Metro Fire arson tip line at (916) 859-3775.

September 8, 2012
UPDATE: Rumsey Canyon fire burns 18,000 acres, is 80 percent contained

By Richard Chang and Phillip Reese
preese@sacbee.com

Firefighters made good progress toward containing a complex of fires in southern Colusa County Sunday, while a separate fire in Lake County grew.

The two fires that comprise the 16 Complex burn four miles apart on Highway 16 in the remote Rumsey Canyon area of Colusa County, near the Yolo County border. By Sunday night, the complex had burned 18,000 acres and was 80 percent contained, according to updates from the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.

Favorable weather conditions Sunday allowed firefighters to increase containment. Officials don't expect the complex to burn much new ground.

September 7, 2012
Colusa County fire 35 percent contained; Scotts fire burns in Lake County

The 16 Complex fire, which started Tuesday in a remote area of Colusa County, has burned 16,719 acres and was reported 35 percent contained late this afternoon.

The complex consists of two fires burning about four miles apart along Highway 16 south of Highway 20.

The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection reported that an advisory evacuation warning is in effect for the Cortina Rancheria area. Residents are on notice to be prepared for a potential evacuation order.

September 7, 2012
Colusa County wildland fire grows overnight

The 16 Complex fire burning in a remote area of Colusa County grew nearly 3,000 acres overnight.

The fire was reported 20 percent contained this morning with 12,500 acres burned.

The 16 Complex consists of two fires about four miles apart along Highway 16, south of Highway 20.

September 6, 2012
Fire in remote area of Colusa County 20 percent contained, evacuation in effect

Colusa fire A2J8LWFCIAEgXz5.jpgThe 16 Complex fire was reported 20 percent contained this evening with 9,754 acres burned in a remote area of Colusa County.

The 16 Complex consists of two fires about four miles apart along Highway 16, south of Highway 20.

An evacuation is in effect for the Cortina Rancheria area. The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection reported that 23 residences, one commercial property and seven outbuildings are threatened.

September 6, 2012
Lightning strikes spark wildland fires, prompt safety warnings

Lighting activity during the past 24 hours has resulted in 13 wildland fires from 310 lightning strikes in areas served by the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection's Amador-El Dorado Unit.

The unexpected thunderstorm brought lightning with wetting rain in some areas and dry lightning, with little of no rain, in other areas, according to a Cal Fire news release.

"Cal Fire firefighters are aggressively suppressing wildland fires across the unit in the state responsibility lands ranging from very rugged and often isolated areas covered in timber to the oak woodlands in the front country," Brian Estes, incident commander, said in a written statement. "We anticipate that additional wildland fires will erupt as the affected areas dry out later this week."

September 5, 2012
Dry lightning increasing fire risk in Sierra