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Gender Reveal Party Pyrotechnic Device Sparked El Dorado Blaze, Fire Officials Say

Courtesy NBCLosAngeles

(FRESNO BEE) ~ The El Dorado fire that burned over 7,000 acres in southern California over the weekend was sparked by a device at a gender reveal party, Cal Fire said.

A “smoke-generating pyrotechnic device” used at a gender reveal party sparked the fire on Saturday morning, according to a California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection news release. The fire spread from the El Dorado Ranch Park in Yucaipa to Yucaipa Ridge, officials said.

Pink or blue smoke have been used at gender reveal parties to show the sex of the baby.

“Cal Fire reminds the public that with the dry conditions and critical fire weather, it doesn’t take much to start a wildfire. Those responsible for starting fires due to negligence or illegal activity can be held financially and criminally responsible,” officials said in the release.

Firefighters reported 7% containment for the fire on Monday morning, the Desert Sun reported.

The Creek Fire, which has ravaged both sides of the San Joaquin River, has been burning since Friday, The Fresno Bee previously reported. As of Sunday, the fire had consumed 73,278 acres and is at zero percent containment, according to Cal Fire.

The fire started in Fresno County near Huntington Lake and Big Creek, according to The Fresno Bee.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency on Sunday for five counties due to the El Dorado Fire, which is “extremely active” due to hot weather, dry vegetation, and steep terrain, according to Desert Sun. Newsom also declared a state of emergency for Fresno, Mariposa, and Madera for the Creek Fire and San Diego County for the Valley Fire.

Around 30 homes were affected by the fire and no injuries were reported, according to the Desert Sun.

The El Dorado fire led to the evacuation of around 3,000 residents, CBS Los Angeles reported.

“It burned in four different directions since we’ve been here. It was pushing to the east, then to the north, and then big westwardly wind shift, and (Sunday) it moved to the south. The wind has been pretty dramatically inconsistent,” Ben Holmes, a U.S. Forest Service senior firefighter on the Arroyo Grande Hotshots team, told the station.

 

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