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Sparks from grinder ignited 23-acre wildfire in San Joaquin County, Cal Fire says

The fire reached 23 acres before being contained.

SAN JOAQUIN COUNTY, Calif. — A grinder sparked a 23-acre wildfire in San Joaquin County Tuesday afternoon, Cal Fire said.

The so-called Cord Fire sparked near Cord Road and East Acampo Road in Clements, according to Cal Fire's Tuolumne-Calaveras Unit. The fire grew to 23 acres before being contained.

Firefighter said the blaze was "another preventable fire and a hard lesson" for the person who sparked it.

"A citation was issued to the responsible party for burning lands of another. While fence repair is important, proper safety measures must be followed to prevent the start of a fire. In this case a grinder was being utilized near Cord Rd and E. Acampo Rd. Clements (San Joaquin County) and it’s sparks ignited the fire," Cal Fire Tuolumne-Calaveras Unit said on Facebook.

WILDFIRE PREPS

According to Cal Fire, the 2021 fire season started earlier than previous years, but also ended earlier, as well. January 2021 saw just under 1,200 acres burned from nearly 300 wildfires. Fires picked up in the summer when the Dixie Fire burned in five Northern California counties — Butte, Plumas, Shasta, Lassen and Tehama. The Dixie Fire started on July 13 and wasn't contained until Oct. 25, burning nearly 1 million acres. It has since become the second-largest wildfire in state history and the largest non-complex fire.

Overall, 2.5 million acres were burned in 2021 from 8,835 wildfires. Over 3,600 structures were destroyed and 3 people killed. 

If you live in a wildfire-prone zone, Cal Fire suggests creating a defensible space around your home. Defensible space is an area around a building in which vegetation and other debris are completely cleared. At least 100 feet is recommended.

WATCH: What you need to know to prepare, stay safe for wildfires

The Department of Homeland Security suggests assembling an emergency kit that has important documents, N95 respirator masks, supplies to grab with you if you’re forced to leave at a moment’s notice. The agency also suggests signing up for local warning system notifications and know your community’s evacuation plans best to prepare yourself and your family in cases of wildfires.

Some counties use Nixle alerts to update residents on severe weather, wildfires, and other news. To sign up, visit www.nixle.com or text your zip code to 888777 to start receiving alerts. 

Read more: Are you wildfire ready? Here's what to do to prepare for fire season.

PG&E customers can also subscribe to alerts via text, email, or phone call. If you're a PG&E customer, visit the Profile & Alerts section of your account to register.

What questions do you have about the latest wildfires? If you're impacted by the wildfires, what would you like to know? Text the ABC10 team at (916) 321-3310.

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