A vegetation fire between the Nevada County Fairgrounds and Highway 20/49 has been attributed to a homeless camp, adding to a list of similar small blazes in the last year.
The fire was reported at approximately 4:30 p.m. Wednesday on the 500 block of Freeman Lane. Responding units from Grass Valley Fire Department and Nevada County Consolidated Fire District found a 20-foot by 20-foot area of brush burning near a homeless camp, reported Battalion Chief Steve Smith.
Crews quickly extinguished the fire without any damage to structures, Smith reported; no responsible parties were located.
While local fire districts do not keep track of the number of fires caused by homeless camps, The Union has reported on at least six in the last year. Most recently, a similarly modest fire was attributed to a transient camp in Nevada City on Oct. 25, also without injuries or structural damage.
Earlier Wednesday, fire units were also dispatched to a vegetation fire in the 16000 block of Holly Davo Road at approximately 10:30 p.m., Smith reported.
Responding fire crews from Cal Fire and Consolidated Fire found approximately three quarters of an acre of vegetation burning, including one outbuilding.
“It was probably an unattended debris burn from the day before,” Smith said. “They had extinguished their pile, and it looks like it wasn’t extinguished completely.”
Crews were able to quickly control the fire, and no one was injured.
“The home was unoccupied; it looks like they were out of town,” he said.
Both fires serve as cautionary tales that, although fire authorities lifted the burn ban at the end of October, the potential for fire remains high until the end of the fire season, when the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection determines the danger has dissipated.
“Things are very dry and the burn restriction is back in place until we get some more rain,” Smith said.
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