Robbers fire spreads but containment increases

Published: Sunday, Jul. 15, 2012 - 12:00 am | Page 2B

The Robbers fire in Placer County continued to grow Saturday and was blamed for destroying its first structures – one home and three outbuildings – but firefighters were making progress at getting a handle on it.

The fire had burned 1,950 acres by Saturday night and still was threatening 170 homes in areas near Iowa Hill, Foresthill and other communities. Officials could not pinpoint the location late Saturday of the burned structures.

Department of Forestry and Fire Protection officials said the fire containment had grown to 20 percent from 10 percent on Friday night.

More than 1,900 firefighters and a huge amount of equipment, including 15 helicopters and 36 bulldozers, were battling the stubborn blaze that broke out Wednesday afternoon.

Fire officials said homes off Yankee Jims Canyon and the Shirttail Canyon area remain under evacuation orders, as do homes in portions of Iowa Hill.

There are numerous road closures in the area, and officials are maintaining a Red Cross evacuation center at the Foresthill High School gym.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation and, after dealing with scorching temperatures earleir in the week, firefighters caught a break from cooler weather the past two days.

Fire officials said winds from the south have been driving the fire to burn toward the northeast.

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