CAL FIRE says illegal fireworks sparked brush fire near Millerton Lake in Fresno County

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- CAL FIRE crews are working hard to control the Sky Fire near the South Fine Gold Picnic Area.

As of Wednesday, officials say they expect 95% containment by the end of the day, and hope for 100% containment by Thursday.


They are dropping several thousands of gallons of water per hour to put out this fire that sparked shortly after 10 pm on Monday.
The Sky Fire was sparked just 11 days after crews responded to the Gold Fire near the same area in Millerton Lake.

On Tuesday, fire officials have confirmed that illegal fireworks were the cause of this most recent wildfire.

One family who lives nearby was there when the fire started.

"About 10:30 pm, we heard a few pops," says Heidi Lawless. "I thought it sounded like either gunshots or fireworks."


On Monday night, Lawless and her husband saw the intense flames come close to their home.

They noticed it was right in their backyard, so they did not hesitate to evacuate.

"We just ran and got out," she said. "I didn't even bring my purse. I brought nothing but my animals and their selves."
Crews are mopping up hot spots and moving logs so they won't roll downhill.

In an attempt to be proactive, Lawless and her husband say they typically call officials when they hear fireworks.


"It happens all the time and no one comes, so we just watch for the fire and we just stop calling," she said. "So we would just like some response and enforce the laws that we have - I mean, if it says no parking after 8, enforce it."

With the 4th of July around the corner, CAL FIRE is reminding people that it is illegal to light any type of fireworks east of the Friant/Kern Canal or west of Interstate 5.

A felony charge will be issued for anyone caught recklessly starting a fire.

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