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Indian Valley Record
Greenville, California
August 6, 1959     Indian Valley Record
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August 6, 1959

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orth County Fire Burn 3,000 Acres Forest Fires of various types and sizes swept through some Canyon. Another 5 acres blackened by a fire south of Clear Creek 3,000 acres of northern Plumas County Sunday, Monday and l Anoiher 1,150 acres -- most of ii private land -- were[early Monday evening. Tuesday of this week. burned in the Lights Creek area in a fire that started at an un- A nurnnr of small fires throughout the area were extin- A total of 1,800 acres were destroyed in the Hallstead Flat manned guard station Tuesday. Fire which broke out Sunday near Grey's Flat in Feather River On Monday, around 35 acres were burned near Taylorsville. I guished without damage. , BETTER SAFE UNCLE ] RECORD VOL 28, No. 20 Greenville, Plumas Counts' California August 6, 195g Sought as. Last of Conflagration ear Greys Flat PUt Out A firebug who was believed to have caused the blaze which .early this week destroyed. 1,800 acres of timber near Greys Plat was being sought today by law officers, and reports in- dicated assistance was being given by a special government who had been to the area. One report was that a man driving a sedan, several years old was driving up Highway 40A Sunday and was seen to cross over into the left-hand lane and onto the gravel shoulder, flu a lighted cigarette into the dry grass beside the highway nd speed on his way. Another report was that a man was -Seen to park his car, get out, walk through the trees and un- derbrush to a point perhaps 100 yards from thepavement and deliberately set the fire. Thre was no question that the fire started about noon Sun- di'y, and that by mid-afternoon it had roared out of'control in nbrtherly direction, destroying one house in the middle of a of five and miraculously missing the other four, and up an almost perpendicular bluff more than 100 feet The column of smoke was plainly visible from many miles crway in every direction. More than 800 men were on the line before the fire was Controlled. These included 50 Zuni Indians, 150 or more men from Stead Air Force Base and the erlong Munitions 'Depot, 200 members of Forest Service fire fighting crews, 40 to 50 ex- l:erts flown in from other National Forest headquarters and the llance loggers normally employed by lumber firms operating various parts of Plumas County. It was the Joe Pinkham home which was destroyed. Four houses in the same group, all of them nearer the burning than Pinkham's, did not burn. 40A was closed at the Greenville Wye for some hours Sunday afternoon and evening and again for a Monday, west-bound traffic which normally would down the canyon being sent in the direction of Green- Chester and Red Bluff. Chief reason for this was to assure fire fighting eqmpment could .move along the highway Seven borate bombers were pressed into service, based on airports at Quincy and Chester. There was also a bird- plane to direct operations by the bombers, an observa- plane and a helicopter in operation. Planes were also used fly fire-fighting personnel into the area, landing at Gcmsner Quincy. By l[ondcr forenoon the fire was regarded as "contc.ned'" it threatened seriously on several occasions to break] h the hnes which" had been thrown around it. By Mo, ,,,.,,.,I II it was called "under control," and mop-up operations immediately. Chellis Carpenter, Plumas County district attorney, said yes- state law is less severe than federal law in dealing with convicted of setting : forest fire. Both the California and safety dode and thb code on pubhc rsources pro- he said, that being a firebug is only a misdemeanor. How- there is a federal statute which provides: "Whoever, willfully and without authority, sets on fire any timber.., under .. the jurisdiction of the United States. shall he fined not more than $5,000 or imprisoned not more ttcm five Years, or both." Carpenter indicated that in case it becomes necessary to prosecute someone for starting the Greys Flat or ther serious fire he probably will request that the defendant e tried in Federal Court. Thre were also persistent reports that the two fires which tarted later this week in the Indian Valley area "would bear )nvestigating." Acres Burned Monday; Slopped Near Tavlorsoille the potentials of a people, the fire departments of the one which lTaylorsville, Greenville and Cres- in the Feather River Can- cent Mills as well as the county Sunday, broke out at 3:15J road department. Pro Monday on the Cardozai ranch on the Taylorsville road First house threatened by the below Mt. Huff. 1 blaze was the Wes 'Wheelock re- Officially named the "Arling- ' sidence. Heavy dumpings of ton Fire," the blaze brned to borate and crews located nearby Within 3 miles of Taylorsville. protected the building from dam- Winds averaging about 6 miles age. The Myles Timmons residence. an hour kept the flames moving roughly paralle to the road. c/oser to Taylorsvi]le, was direct- " ly in the fire's path by the time Fre.t servt(:e men and equip. it vas brot,'..ql under control rnent were rushed to the scene, about 5:30 pro. The fire was but the number of both skilled several hundred yards off when and unskilled fire-fighters avait- Mr and Mrs Timmons. with the able was limiteddue to the fact hat hundreds of men from hroughot the surrounding area ere employed in quelling the ajor Italstead Flat fire in Feather River Casyon, THE aid of friends, removed all of their belongings and stood by to evacuate. But the fire was stop- ped horr. The Forest Service had about Combining Chester Progressive and Indian Valley Record single copy 10c I Fire Monday burned to within'several hundred yards of .the Mys Timmons home about 3 I miles from Ta, .... ltte. Personal belongings had already been mved from the home by Mr I and Mrs Timmons andiends when this picture was taken  a forest service truck taking' on a I water supply through a garden hose which Mr Timmons (standing at right) had been wetting down the yard. -- i, i . i i i i , 1150 Acre THAN SORRY Most everyone by now is a- ware of the extreme forest fire danger, and foresters art Chester reported a rather humorous in- cident as a result, A man ruched into the Forest Service office Sunday night to announce that a fire was breaking out. However, he was unable to describe satisfactor- ily the exact location. Fire, fighters accompanied him as he returned to the scene. And there was a squirrel raising large clouds of dust in burrowing under a log. The individual was red.face, but the foresters declared that they'd rather be safe sorry. HUMIDrrT REMAINS LOW AT CHESTER Forest Service readings at Chester for he4irst several days this month showed high temper- stores of!92. 92 andS89 respect- ively on the first, seond and third. Low temperatures were 36, 33 and 34, respectively. The low humidity was 7 on August first, 13 on the second and 8 on the third. ZUNI INDIANS MOVE TO LIGHTS CREEK FIRE The 25-man crew of trained Zuni Indian fire-fighters moved into the Lights Creek area Tues- day, to the scene of a new for- est fire there. They woked ear- lier in the week on the larger fire near Grey's Flat, They come from New Mexico, FIRE TO THE NORTH A small forest fire was report. ed Monday on the Susan River District north of Westwood. 1 Another 1,150 acres of i :tzes early this] It was estimated that -- despite the draw on men and equip- week in .the. IghLs Creek cce -5- ut ..... [ s northeast aliment by the numerous other fires in the county and elsewhere Greenville and Taylorsville. ' * * ontr s-!included a total of over 100 men rom three Greenville area The fire was reported as fairly well under c el Wedne that some 300 men were on-the fire late Tnesday, Tkes day morning after 1,150 acres had been burned A line was completely around the fire at 6:30 crm. The fire broke out at one o'clock Tuesday afternoon, starting in buildings at Lights Creek Guard Station (unoccupied b7 the Forest Service) which were destroped in short order. It burned quickly through a region consisting mainly of cutover lcrnd It was reported that 75 per cent of the burned,,* area was private land owned by Shasta Forest Products. On Tuesday night, attempts were being made to hold the fire at the Bear Creek Road, but fire-lighters were plagued with numerous spot fires that jumped the line. 0 TONY FROM CHESTER MONDAY County Smothered with Borate services there beginning about 5:30 pm. On Tuesday it started all over l again in lhe Lights Creek area. District Ranger Sam Hall of Chester said a total of 30 tons of borate, in addition to around 17 000 gallons of water, were trans- ported by 7 planes from Chester on Monday alone. Aerial tankers from Chester and Quincy were still operating on a full-time schedule early this Week, a total of around 15 planes employed in dropping borate sol- ution and playing a major role in restricting forest fire losses. The planes were employed on the Ha]stead Flat fire over the week end, then were transferred Monday afternoon to the Arling- ton fire near Taylorsville, where they were given a large smre of the credit for bringing the blaze under control later in the day. No sooner has this fire been One zealous pilot took the top off a tree when he skim. reed his tanker plane as near the ground as possible during the fire near Taylorsvile. slowed to a walk, than another broke out near Clear Creek, on Hamilton Branch, and some of the planes performed similar MANPOWER IS AT PREMIUM Fire-fighters were much in demand Monday in the Green- ville area---and throughout the rest of northern Plumas Coun- ty. It was reported that  an. other small fire broke out ne Hahn's Creek several miles orth of Greenville. One man was standing by when the xeport came in. He went to the scene and put out It was held to. approximately 14 planes in use carrying the bar- largely through the very I ate solution to the canyon fire use of the tankerand these were all shuttled to the aries, new fire and "cooled" it enough credited with keeping the so that by the time men enough down to a minimum were could be put on the fire lines it effective efforts of local took only a short while to bring ,l , , it under control. CHESTER Eight of the tanker planes the fire. CANYON FIRE were based in Quincy at Gansner I The individual was Uoyd Some 27 men from the Chester airport and in. addition there I Wilson. Sevm-aI Westmna Patfl were sent to the Halstead were six working out of Chester, emlflOy Joined him t he Fire near Twain this past ltwo large ones and four smaller hnd the fire fairly well undz end. ones. eatzol. Forest Fire Burns baKe" Earl Dakin, Forest Serivce patrolman out of Quincy, nar- ro'ly escaped being burned to" death in the fire that broke out Sunday afternoon near Grays Flat in Feather River Canyon. As it was, he suffered second degree burns on his face, ears and right hand. Dakin was the first man to reach the fire--witb a small tanker at 1:58 pm. He was fight- ing desperately to keep it from spreading, and had worked in some 80 yards, when he realized he was surrounded by flames and his only chance for survival was to run through themwhich he did. Despite his burns, he continued to fight the fire [or another hour or two until the pain forced him to give up. He drove his truck to the Plumas District HospitaL. where he was given treatment fox his burns and released. The following day, in spite of 'a sleepless night, he was back in the thick of things at the Ar- lington Fire near Taylorsville. (Two weeks ago Dakin was the first man on a fire that started near Virgllia. and he was cred- Red with keeping that blaze from spreading until help ar- rived.) i lumber companies - Almoner Plumas and Cheney. Also a 25 man crew of Zuni Indians trained experts from New Mexico. I The aerial tankers had ceased borate dropping operation I Wednesday morning -- lending veracity to reports that the fire was fairly well under, control. No report has been issued on the cause of the fire. ':'2 Acres Burn on Branch Some 4fi acres of grass and, small timber were burned Mon-[ day evening m a fire that broke I $ out about 5:30 pm near the rail- road trackson Hamilton Branch l below Clear Creek. Some 25 men from the Chester District were employed in fight- in:.,, the Yre. which was brought under control at about 9 o'clock. The fire, named "Milepost 34," included one main blaze and three spots. Borate dumping by aerial lankers played a large part in holding down the fire. said dis- trict ranger Sam Hall. George Dakin, forest service patrolman who was the first man on the maior fire near Grey's Flat, points to the course of the Arlington fire near Taylorsville, where he was among fire,, fighters the following day.