Pacific Gas & Electric equipment may have been involved in the start of the big Dixie Fire burning in the Sierra Nevada, the nation’s largest utility reported to California regulators.
According to the Associated Press, PG&E sent a report to the California Public Utilities Commission saying that a repairman responding to a circuit outage on July 13 spotted blown fuses in a conductor atop a pole, a tree leaning into the conductor, and fire at the base of the tree.
KRCRtv.com is reporting the Dixie Fire, burning in the Feather River Canyon has grown to nearly 47 square miles (122 square kilometers) and is just 15 percent contained.
On Sunday, Butte County and Plumas County officials issued new evacuation orders for the fire including for the areas of Jonesville and Philbrook.
The fire is burning in a remote area with limited access, extended travel times, and steep terrain challenges with containment. Large pyro-cumulous clouds formed over the fire and produced a large smoke column which increased fire activity.
PG&E equipment has repeatedly been linked to major wildfires, including a 2018 fire that ravaged the town of Paradise and killed 85 people.
Other wildfire updates
The enormous Bootleg Fire, one of the largest in modern Oregon history, has already burned more than 476 square miles (1,210 square kilometers), an area about the size of Los Angeles. It is now 25 percent contained.
The Tamarack Fire, which was sparked by lightning on July 4, had charred about 28.5 square miles (74 square kilometers) of dry brush and timber as of Sunday night.
A fire in the mountains of northeast Oregon grew to more than 18 square miles (48 square kilometers) by Sunday. The Elbow Creek Fire that started Thursday has prompted evacuations in several small communities. This fire is 10 percent contained.