Monday, April 14, 2014
PLACERVILLE, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Kyburz Fire 95% contained

DSC_5830 ec

SMOKE wafts among the trees as a Garden Valley Fire water tender travels along a fire road on the perimeter of the Kyburz Fire Wednesday morning. Democrat photo by Krysten Kellum

By
From page A1 | July 12, 2013 | 7 Comments

With 95 percent containment of the 615-acre Kyburz fire as of Thursday morning, mop-up operations began in earnest.

The main concern Wednesday morning was the fire going into the area of the 2004 Freds Fire, which had in turn gone into area burned by the 1992 Cleveland Fire, said Michelle Puckett of the Bureau of Land Management. Puckett, based out of state, was brought in Tuesday as outside help after the fire was upgraded from Type 3 to Type 2.

The trees affected by the 7,700-acre Freds Fire posed a danger to firefighters, as they were already weakened and could fall down, Puckett said. Snags, or dead trees that are still standing, were mostly in clumps.

Laura Hierholzer of the U.S. Forest Service, who wrote the analysis of the trees affected by the Freds Fire, noted that the area looked better than she thought it would. There were still green areas where the current fire had swept through so quickly it didn’t burn all the fuel.

The burn depends on different types of fuels, Hierholzer said. In this case, “flashy fuels” burn really fast but leave green areas. “It’s a very good thing. Topography also affects it,” she said, noting that the steeper area make for a quicker burn as the fire moved uphill.

The focus Wednesday, the two said, would be on reducing fuels to make sure there were no additional flare-ups. Five-gallon backpacks would be used to spray water onto dirt and mix it into mud, which would be spread around the fuels, making it harder to catch on fire. It’s better than dirt in that it takes more water to cool something down than mud does to make it less flammable. Meanwhile, breaking logs and creating firebreaks would help reduce the fuel load.

Fuel breaks tie in nicely with the idea of defensible space, Puckett said, in that the area is considered a WUI – a wildland urban interface. As there are some residents in the area, they should use the same technique, should a wildland fire spread.

Residents might also notice stacks of lumber piled around, taken from the forest to prevent fire using the trees as fuel. These will be burned at a later date, when it is not fire season, Puckett said, as part of a prescribed burn. Larger, densely spaced trees make excellent fuel, she said, as the fire can climb and the embers could float over fuel breaks. Fuel breaks themselves are “essential,” she said, whether small ones by hand crews or large ones by bulldozers.

Another major factor affecting the fire was weather. The wind was moving northward, pushing the fire. Though a “weak system” of weather was expected Wednesday, and they were “not expecting roaring winds,” hot spots and embers could still pop up, Puckett said. This would bring the fire forward and reduce containment.

With the mop-up, which included cutting down dead trees — a large one fell and broke apart after a chainsaw was taken to it — rolling debris was a concern for the firefighters. This could include rocks, burning pinecones and logs. These could not only hurt firefighters, but could roll downhill and start the fire in a new area.

Crews from outside the area including Plumas County and Klamath County in Oregon and from “all over” were shipping in after the type change for a “structure rotation” and to assist local units, who would be partially relieved to focus on other incidents locally.

“It’s mostly just mop-up,” Puckett reiterated. Though there is very little activity, with mostly smoke and very little actual flames to be found, containment remained at 80 percent on Wednesday as crews worked to make fuel breaks larger.

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | 7 comments

  • FranJuly 11, 2013 - 5:07 pm

    A heart felt thank you to any one who helped on this...I am humbled by peoples courage at times...and this would be one of them.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • FranJuly 11, 2013 - 5:11 pm

    What Is the Wildland Urban Interface? http://www.wildlandfirersg.org/Learn/content.cfm?ItemNumber=646

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • billy bobJuly 11, 2013 - 8:59 pm

    good job firefighters!!!

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • LpJuly 11, 2013 - 11:42 pm

    To the Fire Fighters!!! Good job!!!

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Vic SubiaJuly 12, 2013 - 8:38 am

    Well done. Stay safe.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Jim RiordanJuly 12, 2013 - 9:54 am

    Heartfelt thanks to all of our great firefighters. In Cameron Park, we are blessed with group to whom I owe much for their help given to my elderly parents who needed them several times before they passed away. Between law enforcement and fire fighters, we have the best in EDCO. Thank you all for putting your lives on the line every day. You are all special to me.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Patti RiggsJuly 12, 2013 - 3:50 pm

    Thanks so much to all the firefighters that risked their lives to fight the Kyburz fire. You are a great bunch of people. Also, thanks to the Fire Dept. for all the helpful assistance you provided me during this trying time. It gave me much comfort.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
.

News

 
Water rights detailed for EDWPA board

By Dawn Hodson | From Page: A1, 5 Comments

Supes pick 1% growth forecast

By Chris Daley | From Page: A1, 7 Comments

 
Sanford trial keys off chain of evidence

By Cole Mayer | From Page: A1

Cedar Springs Waldorf offers open house

By News Release | From Page: B1

 
Georgetown calls stage 2 drought

By Dawn Hodson | From Page: A1, 1 Comment

Candidates busy raising money

By Dawn Hodson | From Page: B1, 12 Comments

 
70th anniversary: Jeep ready for D-Day

By Dawn Hodson | From Page: A1 | Gallery

Tick prevention reminder issued

By Health and Human Services Agency | From Page: A3, 6 Comments

 
.

Opinion

California rambling: Spring gardens

By John Poimiroo | From Page: A4 | Gallery

 
Home country: Fly fising

By Slim Randles | From Page: A4, 2 Comments

Cancer center vital resource

By Mountain Democrat | From Page: A4, 3 Comments

 
.

Letters

Supervisor responds to Small Farm rate issue

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5, 16 Comments

 
EDH APAC

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5, 10 Comments

Government regulations

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5, 196 Comments

 
Censorship?

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5, 158 Comments

.

Sports

Schedule: April 14-19, 2014

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A6

 
Sanders breaks through with race victory

By Bill Sullivan | From Page: A6 | Gallery

Lacrosse: Trojans battle but fall to St. Francis

By Brandon Anicich | From Page: A6

 
Softball: Grizzlies win wild one

By Jerry Heinzer | From Page: A6 | Gallery

Under the Scoreboard: April 13, 2014

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A6

 
Tennis: Golden Sierra vs Forest Lake Christian

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A6 | Gallery

El Dorado falls to Cosumnes Oaks

By Mike Bush | From Page: A7

 
Roundup: April 10-12

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A7 | Gallery

.

Prospecting

Tuvan Throat Singers perform at Harris Center

By Harris Center for the Arts | From Page: B1

 
The Winner Is … Everyone

By Democrat Staff | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Foothill gourmet: Bacon and cackle berries

By Donna Brown | From Page: B2

 
Musicians fiddle around at Harris Center

By Harris Center for the Arts | From Page: B10

 
.

Essentials

Lake levels 4-10-14

By Michael Raffety | From Page: A2

 
DUI Log: Jan. 24-Feb. 25

By Cole Mayer | From Page: A2, 2 Comments

Crime Log: March 19-24

By Cole Mayer | From Page: A2, 2 Comments

 
.

Obituaries

Mike Clyde Parkerson

By Contributor | From Page: A2

 
John Krek

By Contributor | From Page: A2, 1 Comment

.

Real Estate

.

Comics

Speed Bump

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
American Profile Crossword

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Tundra

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
Horoscope, Tuesday, April 15, 2014

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Horoscope, Monday, April 14, 2014

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
Shoe

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Sudoku

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
Rubes

By Contributor | From Page: A8

New York Times Crossword

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
TV Listings

By Contributor | From Page: A8