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Fire Crews Busy, But No Big Blazes Over 4th

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.”