By Dominique Williams | Sacramento Bee
Firefighters are looking to gain the upper hand on the Mosquito Fire in El Dorado and Placer counties near Sacramento ahead of an afternoon of stiff winds and possible rain Sunday.
The fire, which erupted on Mosquito Road at Oxbow Reservoir the evening of Sept. 6, is measured at 71,292 acres with 21% containment, Cal Fire said in a Saturday morning update.
Firefighters continued patrolling and securing control lines Friday night in anticipation of increased winds in the area, which are forecast to peak mid-Saturday afternoon with 20-25 mph gusts, according to Cal Fire.
While the National Weather Service said rain is expected Sunday through Tuesday, Cal Fire said it will help moderate and slow the fire’s growth but is not forecast to be a season-ending event.
Crews will welcome precipitation, but the stronger winds have the potential to cast embers farther out in front of the fire.
“The weather changes will be the biggest challenge for firefighters over the next several days,” Cal Fire said in the update.
The Mosquito Fire has surpassed Siskiyou County’s McKinney Fire, becoming California’s largest wildfire of the year.
Evacuation orders were lifted for parts of Georgetown on Friday afternoon, according to fire officials, but more than 11,000 people remain displaced.
Other wildfire updates
• The Dutch Fire, which erupted Tuesday afternoon near Dutch Flat in Placer County, is burning at 48 acres with 75% containment as of Saturday morning. All evacuations have been lifted and I-80 has opened to one lane in both directions, fire officials said in an update.
• The Mountain Fire, which ignited near Gazelle-Callahan Road in Siskiyou County the afternoon of Sept. 2, is 85% contained with 13,440 acres charred. Increased clouds and light showers are predicted throughout the weekend, which could result in flash flooding or flooding near burn areas, according to Cal Fire.
• The Fairview Fire, burning near the city of Hemet in Riverside County, remains at 28,307 acres and is 98% contained. Weather in the area is expected to shift Saturday to drier and warmer conditions, causing “nuisance smoke” in the areas of the fire perimeter, according to fire officials. The fire has killed two civilians, injured one more and has also injured two firefighters.
Source: Orange County Register