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Lodge fire chars 13 square miles in Northern California

The Lodge fire in California's Mendocino County, fueled by "heavy timber," remained only 35 percent contained, officials said.
By Frances Burns   |   Aug. 11, 2014 at 5:54 PM   |   Comments

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UKIAH, Calif., Aug. 11 (UPI) -- After raging for more than a week, the Lodge fire in northern California continues to burn with some homes at risk, officials said.

The wildfire in Mendocino County, which was first reported July 30, was 35 percent contained Sunday. Almost 60 buildings were at risk after the fire jumped a line.

California, Oregon and Washington have been hit by an epidemic of wildfires because of a prolonged drought. In Northern California, lightning sparked more than 30 fires during the weekend, although most remained small and were quickly extinguished.

Firefighters from all over California, and as far away as Alaska, have been pressed into service to battle the Lodge fire along Highway 101. The fire has charred about 13 square miles.

"These guys are going to do everything humanly possible to save your property," said Carlos Guerrero, a fire captain with the Glendale Fire Department near Los Angeles. "Unfortunately the path of the fire can shift -- Mother Nature is unpredictable. The shift in winds, combined with the inaccessible terrain make it even more dangerous."

The Lodge fire has burned mostly on federal land, but there are small communities in the area. The fire was started by lightning.

"Heavy timber is fueling the fire, and the rugged terrain makes it really difficult to access this kind of wilderness," said Brandon Rodgers, a CalFire spokesman.

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