Cal Fire: Bridge Fire latest local fire to be human-caused |

Cal Fire: Bridge Fire latest local fire to be human-caused

Firefighters work an operation to burn fire fuels ahead of the head of the Bennett Fire last month near Whispering Pines Lane.

The three biggest fires to impact Nevada County residents this fire season, so far, were caused by humans, according to Cal Fire officials.

The River, Bennett and Bridge fires have burned roughly 3,089 acres in the region between August and September. Cal Fire determined all three fires were caused by humans, declaring the Bridge Fire arson on Tuesday.


The fire began in the Auburn State Recreation Area around 1 p.m. Sept. 5, near the Foresthill Bridge. While no residences were threatened, visitors to Lake Clementine were evacuated.

The fire was contained at 411 acres on Sept. 14, about nine days after it began.

The Bridge Fire on Sept. 5.
Submitted by Lauren Rice


Perhaps Grass Valley’s closest call with wildfire this season was the Bennett Fire, which caused 7,000 residents to either evacuate or be under evacuation or shelter-in place advisories.

The fire began in the area of East Bennett Road and Whispering Pines around 3:30 p.m. Aug. 25, and burned approximately 59 acres. The fire was contained Aug. 29.

Cal Fire determined the Bennett Fire was human caused on Sept. 12, and started along the roadway in two separate locations of East Bennett Road in Grass Valley.

Trees torch and vegetation burns while a Cal Fire captain works near the intersection of Whispering Pines Lane and Centennial Drive following the start of the Bennett Fire, which originated near East Bennett Road and Lava Rock Avenue.


Nevada County’s most destructive fire, the River Fire, destroyed 142 structures between Nevada and Placer counties. The fire began around 2 p.m. Aug. 4 and burned a total of 2,619 acres before containment was achieved Aug. 13.

On Sept. 10, Cal Fire announced the fire was human caused and started in the overnight camping area of the Bear River Campground.

A pair of horses are evacuated along Dog Bar Road from the River Fire.


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