Wildfire destroys home near Georgetown

Published: Sunday, Aug. 25, 2013 - 12:00 am | Page 16A
Last Modified: Tuesday, Sep. 3, 2013 - 2:29 pm

An El Dorado County forest fire destroyed one home near Georgetown and took out an outbuilding Saturday in a 45-acre blaze that firefighters subdued before it could do more damage.

California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection spokesman Daniel Berlant said the fire, aided by extremely dry conditions, began around 3 p.m. near state Highway 193 and Empire Creek Circle. Berlant said it burned into two subdivisions on the southern end of Georgetown before fire crews arrived and got the upper hand.

About 80 homes in one subdivision were evacuated and sheriff's officials issued an evacuation advisory.

Firefighters on the ground and in the air stopped the forward progress of the blaze around 7:30 p.m., Berlant said. Most of the evacuation orders were then lifted, with Cal Fire reporting 50 percent containment.

"There was a lot of potential for even more destruction, but once firefighters were able to get in there, we were able to protect the remainder of the homes," Berlant said.

The cause of the fire was under investigation.

Berlant said that even though Cal Fire has sent its crews to other major fires burning around the state, "We still are staffing all of our local stations with additional resources. This type of fire activity is exactly why we are making sure the stations are still staffed."

Meanwhile, the American fire near Foresthill in Placer County had grown to 23,729 acres as of 7:30 p.m., up from 22,040 acres in the morning, according to the U.S. Forest Service. The fire was reported 67 percent contained, with the cause still under investigation.

Call The Bee's Andy Furillo, (916) 321-1141. Follow him on Twitter @andyfurillo.

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