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9/25 King Fire Thursday Update: Flash Flood Warning Cancelled; Fewer Structures Threatened

Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio

Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio

Updates on Inciweb: King Fire

YubaNet.com Updates: King Fire

El Dorado County Sheriff

Cal Fire and USFS King Fire Facebook Page

County of El Dorado Twitter

CA Interagency Incident Management Team 1

El Dorado National Forest

CORRECTION: The Associated Press story posted here at 5 a.m. erroneously stated the King Fire had stretched into Nevada. It has not. Smoke from the fire is affecting Nevada, but the burn area is entirely in California. The post has been corrected.


5:10 p.m. - Flood Warning Lifted; Revised Numbers Released

The National Weather Service cancelled the Flash Flood Warning for the King Fire burn area Thursday afternoon. The fire has burned 96,000 acres in the El Dorado National Forest over Placer and El Dorado counties. Containment is now 43 percent.

The weather service said light showers are possible over the burn area Thursday evening but additional rainfall is expected to be less than one-quarter inch.

Cal Fire reports that 289 structures are threatened by the wildfire. Earlier in the week, the number of homes at risk was put at 12,000.

There are 8,002 personnel working the incident.



1:15 P.M. Flash Flood Warning Issued For King Fire Area

The National Weather Service in Sacramento has issued a Flash Flood Warning for the King Fire burn area in El Dorado and El Placer counties until 6:15 p.m. Thursday.

Sacramento NWS Forecaster Brooke Bingaman said heavy rainfall over the King Fire could lead to flash flooding and debris flows.

"We could have some brief periods of some heavy downpours,” Bingaman. “Because there's firefighters out there we want to make sure that they're not in any type of drainage basins or gully’s where they could all of a sudden get some flash flooding or debris flows."  

She said areas with severe tree and vegetation loss, including the south and middle forks of the American and Rubicon River Basins, are of particular concern because heavy rain would "most likely cause excessive runoff."

“There's a lot of steep terrain in that region and that's why we just wanted to put it out as a heads-up to firefighters,” said Bingaman. “That way the firefighters will know by the terrain and their location if they should exit that region for the time being when the heavy rain starts."

She said the Sacramento office has been in touch with the fire incident meteorologists at the King Fire.

There are 8,002 firefighters working to contain the King Fire.

Meanwhile, another wildfire is burning on the south shore of Lake Tahoe. Officials say this blaze is unrelated to the King Fire. This blaze, called the Cascade Fire, has burned 30 acres and is not threatening any structures. 

-Ed Joyce / Capital Public Radio

5 A.M. Fight Against King Fire Is 2nd Most Costly

(AP) -- A massive blaze in California that threatens thousands of homes has become the second-most expensive blaze to fight in the state this year.

State fire spokesman Daniel Berlant said Wednesday the King Fire east of Sacramento has cost more than $53 million since it began nearly two weeks ago.

Berlant said that figure ranks behind the $86 million that has been spent to tame a still-burning fire in the Klamath National Forest along the California-Oregon border.

However, those figures are nowhere near the more than $127 million spent to stop the Rim Fire last year in Yosemite National Park.

More than 7,600 firefighters are currently battling the King Fire that has destroyed 12 homes and threatens another 12,000.

The fire has burned 95,347 acres and is 43 percent contained.

Sept. 24 - 6 p.m. Weather May Give King Fire Crews A Hand

The weather forecast is more favorable for firefighters working to contain the King Fire in El Dorado and Placer counties.

A Pacific storm is bringing cooler weather, rain and higher relative humidity levels.

Sacramento National Weather Service meteorologist Craig Shoemaker said there's potential for half-an-inch of rain around the King Fire area.

He said the amount of rainfall won't be enough to create debris flow or mudslides in areas burned by wildfire.

"Right now we're not anticipating that the rainfall rates are heavy enough to cause a problem," said Shoemaker. "We're only expecting maybe a tenth of an inch or two-tenths of an inch an hour, that helps out by not producing any type of debris flow."

Shoemaker said the showers should linger through the weekend. He also said the winds will be lighter Thursday and through the rest of the week.

-Ed Joyce / Capital Public Radio