Two fires were contained in Placerville on July 28.
The first saw fire crews dispatched at 12:13 p.m. to a mobile home park at 1525 Cold Springs Road, space 49, said El Dorado County Fire Capt. Brandon McKay. The home was “heavily damaged throughout,” but crews stopped the fire from affecting wildland or other homes. It was fully controlled by 1:34 p.m.
El Dorado County Fire, Cal Fire, Diamond Springs Fire, Rescue Fire and Garden Valley Fire Protection districts responded.
The second was “right off the offramp” of eastbound Highway 50 and Schnell School Road, backing up to the bike trail, McKay said. A small fire of only 0.16 acre, the fire was reported at 4:44 and contained by the top of the hour. No structures were affected, though, according to a Placerville Police Department press release, some houses were evacuated as a precaution.
El Dorado County Fire, Cal Fire and Diamond Springs Fire Protection districts, along with Bureau of Land Management Crew 8, responded.
The causes of both fires are still under investigation. However, PPD believes that the Schnell School fire may have been caused by a transient camp. “Officers came upon an illegal camp in the immediate vicinity of the fire,” the press release stated. “Although the exact cause and origin of the fire remain under investigation, police are confident the illegal camp activities were responsible for sparking the fire.” PPD and County Fire will continue investigating leads based on evidence from the campsite.
“With the chronic drought conditions, we must remain on guard of irresponsible behaviors that can lead to fires on our hillsides,” Police Chief Scott Heller said. “This sort of incident is exactly the reason why we have an illegal camping ordinance in the city.”
Anyone with information on the camp is asked to contact Detective Ron 530-642-5210.