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Fire Crews Busy, But No Big Blazes Over 4th

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Local fire officials say we were fortunate here in the Mother Lode over the long 4th of July holiday weekend.

“It looked like people were heeding the ´no fireworks in Tuolumne County´ message that we had put out, which is great,” said Tuolumne-Calaveras Unit CDF Battalion Chief Richard Imlach Monday morning. He said there were only a few reports of illegal fireworks use throughout the area during the three-day period.

“This was a very quiet year, comparatively speaking,” he continued. “That was great for us because we had so many fires going.”

He says there were a total of 29 fires that burned 217 acres. Of those, 7 were directly related to fireworks. That accounted for 159 charred acres. Four citations were issued for illegal fireworks use.

A main area of concern for fire officials is the Lake Tulloch area. “The illegal use down there is something we can´t tolerate,” he said. “It´s only a matter of time before somebody gets badly injured or we get another large fire down there.”