Cal-Fire Releases Cause Of States Largest Recorded Wildfire

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) – California fire officials say sparks from a hammer driving a metal stake into the ground ignited a 2018 blaze in Northern California the killed a firefighter and became the largest in state history. The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said Thursday the Ranch Fire started July 27, 2018 in Mendocino County and quickly spread aided by tinder dry vegetation, strong winds and hot temperatures. It spread to Colusa, Glenn and Lake counties. Authorities say the River Fire and the Ranch Fire combined to become the Menodinco Complex and burned a total of 459,123 acres, much of it in the Mendocino National Forest. The Ranch Fire burned 410,203 acres and is the largest in California’s history. It also destroyed 280 structures and killed a firefighter from Utah. Cal Fire did not identify the person who ignited the blaze. It says no charges will be filed.


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