California’s Mosquito Fire expected to grow

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California's Mosquito Fire expected to grow

Firefighters put out hotspots from the Mosquito Fire near the community of Foresthill, Calif., on Friday. The wildfire has grown to nearly 47,000 acres and was 10% contained as of Monday morning. Photo by John G. Mabanglo/EPA-EFE

The Mosquito Fire in northern California was expected to grow Monday after cooler weather slowed its down over the weekend.

As of Monday morning, the fire had burned nearly 47,000 acres in El Dorado and Placer counties and was 10% contained, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. Foresthill is about 60 miles northeast of Sacramento.

The fire started Tuesday east of Foresthill, near Mosquito Road and OxBow Reservoir. No reports were made on the number of homes lost in the area, but 5,848 structures were threatened, with 11,000 residents under evacuation orders, KCRA-TV reported.

Evacuation Centers were established at Sierra College in Placer County and Cameron Park Services District and Green Valley Community Church in El Dorado County.

Cal Fire reported no significant growth on the southeast corner of the fire Sunday. Fire activity was expected to increase Monday afternoon, with southwest winds predicted to push the fire to the northeast.

“The steep and rugged terrain make it difficult for ground crews to access the fire directly, therefore building control lines ahead of the approaching fire and building a buffer with defensive firing operations will allow the firefighters the opportunity to slow and potentially stop the fire’s forward progress,” Cal Fire said on its website.

Firefighters have secured containment lines on the southern edge of the blaze and were working Monday to control the southwest perimeter of the fire, as well as continuing efforts to protect Foresthill.

Cooler weather is bringing some relief to firefighter.

“We’re going to see some weak systems that will move over the area,” National Weather Service meteorologist Cory Mueller said, according to the SFGATE. “They’re unlikely to bring any precipitation, but they’ll bring much cooler temperatures.”

A high of 82 degrees was forecast for Foresthill on Monday, with temperatures falling into the 70s on Tuesday and Wednesday.

“Despite cooler temperatures, the historically dry fuel moisture in the vegetation continues driving the fire’s growth,” Cal Fire said.

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