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Cal Fire expects dry lightning over weekend, increased fire danger

Fire crews contain small grass fire west of Roseville
By: ToLewis, The Press Tribune
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Cal Fire reports a high fire danger this week due to consistent temperatures reaching close to triple digits. “In September we always see our highest fire danger in this area,” according to Chelsea Fox, fire prevention specialist with Cal Fire. “The vegetation is at its most critical level of dryness with the low humidity and the high temperatures.” Fox said people should be extra cautious while spending time outdoors doing anything that could cause a fire, such as smoking, using yard equipment or lighting camp fires. The National Weather Service reports an increase in temperatures with a high of 102 degrees expected by Friday afternoon. A slight cooling trend to the low 90s is expected by Sunday with a 20 percent chance of thunderstorms over the weekend. According to Cal Fire, dry lightning is expected throughout northeastern California over the weekend due to an upper level low that is drawing in monsoonal moisture. “The forecasts indicate weather conditions could be similar to the lightning siege we experienced in 2008 when the state saw nearly 2,000 lightning-sparked fires,” said Ken Pimlott, director of Cal Fire, in a statement. “Cal Fire’s firefighters are ready to respond if more fires do break out, but we especially need the public to be extremely cautious because we don’t need any additional fires.” Fire crews quickly contained a small brush fire that broke out west of Roseville Wednesday afternoon. Firefighters responded around 1:55 p.m. to the area of Watt Avenue and Dyer Lane after reports of a brush fire, according to Fox. The fire burned nine acres and was fully contained by 2:44 p.m., less than one hour later, Fox said. No structures were damaged during the blaze and no injuries were reported. The cause of the fire is under investigation. Toby Lewis can be reached at tobyl@goldcountrymedia.com. Follow him on Twitter @TobyLewis_RsvPT.