Low Temperatures and Calm Winds Help Contain California Wildfires

LOS ANGELES, Oct. 6 (UPI) — Firefighters got help Tuesday from sub-freezing temperatures as they battled the Sheep fire in California’s San Bernardino National Forest, officials said.

Wrightwood, Calif., had a low temperature of 24 degrees Tuesday morning and the daytime high was 56, the Los Angeles Times reported. More than 1,900 firefighters took advantage of the lower temperatures and diminished winds to attack hot spots and cut firebreaks around the 7,128-acre blaze, fire officials said.

“The cold temperatures have made it uncomfortable for firefighters,” U.S. Forest Service spokeswoman Robin Prince said, “but it’s helped us contain the fire.”

Fire officials said the blaze was 32 percent contained by Tuesday evening. Officials lifted a mandatory evacuation order for Wrightwood, which had been threatened since Sunday when high winds drove the fire within a few hundred yards of the town.

The cooling trend was prevalent throughout the region, with Lake Arrowhead, Calif., posting a record low for the date of 25 degrees, the National Weather Service said.

“Everybody in the area has been running about 10 to 15 degrees below normal, on the average,” weather service meteorologist Tina Stall said.

Copyright 2009 by United Press International

Categorized | Trees & Forestry
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