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Tuesday Update: Mosquito Fire remains at 85% containment

Staff report, Associated Press

UPDATE Tuesday 10:30 a.m.:

The Mosquito Fire acreage has been adjusted to 76,775 acres burned, according to an update provided by the U.S. Forest Service.

“Containment on the Mosquito fire remains at 85% as crews work on fire line construction, mop-up and suppression repair operations,” the report stated.“ Ground and air resources are utilizing direct engagement when possible along the eastern edge of the fire, including the steep terrain of the Rubicon drainage and along the North Fork of the Middle Fork of the American River.”

Patrol and mop-up operations continue throughout the fire area, the report stated.



“Weather conditions over the next few days support limited fire growth,” the report stated. “Significant suppression repair and hazard tree abatement work remain a priority for incident managers as fire containment increases.”

A virtual community meeting will be held tonight, Tuesday, September 27 at 7:00 p.m. on the following websites: tinyurl.com/MosquitoFire or on Facebook @TahoeNF or @eldoradoNF. You are encouraged to submit your questions in advance via email to 2022.mosquito@firenet.gov, the report stated.



UPDATE Monday 8 a.m.:

The Mosquito Fire has burned 76,781acres and is 85% contained, according to the U.S. Forest Service.

Management of the Mosquito Fire transitioned to the USFS Sept. 23, according to Cal Fire. There are currently 1,248 personnel working the fire, according to the USFS.

“As of Friday, September 23, all evacuation orders in both Placer and El Dorado counties have been lifted,” the USFS wrote on their website.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation, according to the USFS.

UPDATE Friday 9 a.m.:

The Mosquito Fire has burned 76,575 acres and is 60% contained, Cal Fire said in an incident report Friday morning.

UPDATE Thursday 8:15 a.m.:

The Mosquito Fire increased to 76,539 acres burned and is now 60% contained, Cal Fire said in an incident report Thursday morning.

“Today, clear skies with warmer and drier conditions will allow fuels to start drying again with the increased potential for fire activity,” Cal Fire wrote in the report. “This warmer and drier period with light west winds will continue to build through the weekend and early next week. Due to the continued work of firefighters and cooperators, all evacuation orders for both Placer and El Dorado counties have now been lifted, allowing residents to return home.”

UPDATE Wednesday 5:30 p.m.:

All evacuation orders have been lifted for the Mosquito Fire in Placer and El Dorado counties, a tweet from the Placer County Sherrif’s Office stated Wednesday evening.

An evacuation warning remains in effect in the Stumpy Meadows area of El Dorado County. Find the evacuation map here.

The Mosquito Fire has burned 76,290 acres and is 49% contained, according to Cal Fire.

UPDATE Tuesday 9:15 a.m.:

Smoke smolders up from the roots of a tree after the head of the Mosquito Fire burned through this area earlier along Volcanoville Road. Firefighters are anticipating an uptick in fire activity today.Photo: Elias Funez

The percentage of contained and number of acres burned remains the same for the Mosquito Fire, Cal Fire said in an incident report Tuesday.

The Mosquito Fire remains at 39% containment and 76,290 acres burned, according to Cal Fire. The cause of the fire still remains under investigation.

UPDATE Monday 7:50:

The Mosquito Fire is now at 39% containment and has burned more than 76,000 acres, Cal Fire said in an incident report released Monday.

The fire has burned 76,290 acres in Placer and El Dorado counties. The fire has destroyed 78 structures and has damaged 13 more, the Placer County Sheriff Office said in a tweet Monday.

“Due to this increase in containment, the current wet weather, and the quick response from our cooperating utility parnters, law enforcement officials were able to repopulate many of the surrounding communities on Sunday,” Cal Fire said in the report.

For the latest on evacuations, click here.

For more updates on the Mosquito Fire and other incidents impacting Nevada County, please visit The Union Now.

Update Friday 7:38 a.m.:

The Mosquito Fire has burned 69,908 acres across Placer and El Dorado Counties and remains at 20% containment, Cal Fire stated in a tweet Friday morning.

Seventy-three structures have been destroyed, and 13 structures have been damaged as a result of the fire, the tweet stated. Approximately 9,236 homes remain threatened, Cal Fire stated.

UPDATE Thursday 8:30 a.m.:

The Mosquito Fire has grown to 64,159 acres and remains at 20% containment, Cal Fire wrote in an incident reported released Thursday morning.

The fire, which has now been active for eight days, destroyed 70 structures and damaged 10 more, the report stated.

Thirty-two crews are assigned to the fire, with 65 dozers, 80 water tenders and 3,052 personnel, according to the report.

For today, the priority is to “remain securing” all three corners of the fire, Cal Fire stated in the report.

“Firefighters have been very successful in holding the control lines along the communities of Todd Valley and Foresthill despite challenging fire conditions on Tuesday,” the report stated.

The full report can be found here.

Firefighters battle the Mosquito Fire burning on Michigan Bluff Rd. in unincorporated Placer County, Calif., on Wednesday, Sept. 7, 2022. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)

UPDATE Wednesday 8:30 a.m.:

The Mosquito Fire had burned 58,544 acres as of Wednesday morning, an incident report from Cal Fire stated.

The fire is now 20% contained with 3,052 personnel continuing to fight the blaze.

Sixty-four structures have been destroyed, according to Cal Fire, and another 10 have been damaged. Approximately 5,848 structures remained threatened by the fire, and 11,277 people are currently evacuated, the report stated.

UPDATE at 9:24 a.m. Tuesday, Sept. 13

As of Tuesday morning, the Mosquito Fire is at 49,761 acres and 18% contained, Cal Fire reported.

Cal Fire confirms 46 structures have been destroyed and five structures have been damaged.

“Overnight, firefighters continued strengthening and securing control lines around most of the fire’s perimeter,” Cal Fire wrote in the incident report. “Crews added containment on a large portion of the fireline in the Michigan Bluff area and continue to make great strides towards completing more containment lines all along the Foresthill Road corridor.”

UPDATE at 7:45 a.m. Monday, Sept. 12

The Mosquito Fire is at 46,587 acres as of Monday morning, and 10 percent contained.

“As anticipated, fire activity and smoke production increased Sunday afternoon after the inversion lifted over much of the fire,” Cal Fire wrote in its incident report published Sunday night. “However, thunderstorms remained south of US Highway 50 and did not affect the fire.”

“The incident’s fire behavior analyst cautions, however, that ‘while this is not a weather show, it is a fuels show,’” the report continued. “All the vegetation — from fine grass to big trees — is extremely dry and burning readily. Incident Commander Rick Young went on a reconnaissance flight Sunday afternoon and confirmed that ‘the fire wasn’t going anywhere fast (i.e., not wind driven), but where it was burning, it was really burning.’”

The rest of the report, as well as an evacuation map, can be found here: https://www.fire.ca.gov/incidents/2022/9/6/mosquito-fire/

UPDATE at 9:45 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 10

The Mosquito Fire is at 33,754 acres, and zero percent contained.

UPDATE at 10:56 a.m. Friday, Sept. 9

The Placer County Sheriff’s Office said the Mosquito Fire is at least 23,000 acres.

UPDATE at 10:45 a.m. Friday, Sept. 9

The Mosquito Fire is at 14,250 acres, and is zero percent contained.

UPDATE at 7:23 a.m. Friday, Sept. 9

The Mosquito Fire is at 13,704 acres, and is zero percent contained.

Initially posted

LOS ANGELES — Forces were beginning to collide in California on Thursday as wildfires threatened communities, an epic heat wave stressed the electrical grid and as moisture from a hurricane was expected to bring thunderstorms and floods along with cooling.

In the Sierra, the Mosquito Fire had scorched nearly 11 square miles (6,807 acres), forcing evacuations in Placer and El Dorado counties. Several structures and at least 10 cars burned near the Gold Rush-era community of Michigan Bluff.

The Mosquito Fire was zero percent contained Thursday afternoon.


The fire’s cause remained under investigation. Pacific Gas & Electric notified the state Public Utilities Commission that the U.S. Forest Service placed caution tape around the base of a PG&E transmission pole but that no damage could be seen. PG&E said unspecified “electrical activity” occurred close in time to the report of the fire on Sept. 6.

Firefighters struggled to control major wildfires in Southern California and the Sierra Nevada that have grown explosively, forced extensive evacuations and produced smoke that could interfere with solar power production.

The Fairview Fire in Southern California covered about 30 square miles (78 square kilometers) of Riverside County and was just 5% contained. Two people died while fleeing flames on Monday and at least seven structures have been destroyed.

The Nevada Division of Environmental Protection warned the Reno area that air quality could be very unhealthy to hazardous due to smoke from the Mosquito Fire 100 miles (160 kilometer) away.

Another dangerous blaze burned in stands of timber near the Big Bear Lake resort region in the San Bernardino Mountains east of Los Angeles. It was just 2% contained after scorching nearly 2 square miles (5 square kilometers).

A surge of clouds and showers associated with Hurricane Kay off Mexico’s Baja California peninsula knocked the edge off temperatures in Southern California at times but also were a potential problem for solar generation.

Despite the initial impacts of Kay, forecasters warned that the heat was not yet done.

“The seemingly endless heat wave that has been plaguing California will finally becoming to an end across at least Southern California, but not before two more very hot days and very warm nights,” the Los Angeles-area weather office wrote.

Operators of California’s power grid issued another “Flex Alert” call for voluntary cuts in use of electricity and expanded the period by two hours, 3 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Wildfire smoke and the cloud cover created uncertainty about solar power production in afternoon hours when temperatures rise toward their peaks, said Elliot Mainzer, president and CEO of the California Independent System Operator.

There was also uncertainty about wind power at the back end of the period.

Cal-ISO has issued Flex Alerts since last week and has avoided ordering rolling power outages, although a miscommunication with one Northern California provider led to blackouts.

With record demand on power supplies across the West, California snapped its record energy use around 5 p.m. Tuesday with 52,061 megawatts, far above the previous high of 50,270 megawatts set July 24, 2006.

An emergency appeal for conservation that was sent to Californians’ cellphones was credited with an immediate drop in demand on the electrical grid that evening.

Electrical demand hit 50,184 megawatts on Wednesday but it ended up being “a relatively quiet operation on the system,” Mainzer told a briefing.

The electrical load forecast for Thursday afternoon and evening was higher, however, and the uncertainty involving the renewable energy sources made the situation a bit more complex, he said.

“We certainly think we’re close to turning the corner, but we still have challenges ahead of us this evening,” Mainzer said.

Storm and wind conditions associated with the approaching hurricane were likely to create a new set of risks for power shortages in Southern California, he noted.

Hurricane Kay was expected to be downgraded to a tropical storm before it reaches northern Baja California on Friday, the National Weather Service said.

Despite losing hurricane strength, Kay was expected to send a surge of moisture into Southern California. Strong winds, heavy rain and flash floods were likely Friday evening through Saturday. Tropical storm warnings were posted for mariners.

Up the West Coast, forecasters predicted strong, gusting winds and low humidity across western Oregon beginning Friday’ and authorities warned of heightened wildfire danger after an unseasonably hot and dry late summer.

At least two power utilities issued potential shutoff notices to more than 40,000 customers to the south and west of Portland, Oregon, because of winds that could reach 50 mph.

Forecasters warned of a chance of “rapid fire spread” but said winds were not expected to be as intense as those that hit on Labor Day weekend in 2020, fanning wildfires that burned more than 1 million acres, destroyed 4,000 homes and killed at least 11 people.

— John Antczak, The Associated Press

Associated Press writer Gillian Flaccus in Portland, Oregon, and Scott Sonner in Reno, Nevada, contributed to this report.


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