SACRAMENTO (KRON) — A hammer was determined as the cause of California’s largest wildfire that burned more than 400,000 acres last year in parts of Northern California, CAL FIRE said Thursday.
The Ranch Fire began on July 27 in Mendocino County and fire officials say the blaze was sparked by a hammer driving a metal stake into the ground, causing a metal fragment to land on a fuel bed.
The fire burned 280 structures, killed one firefighter and injured three other firefighters.
CAL FIRE says no charges have been filed in connection to the blaze.
At 410,203 acres, the Ranch Fire, one of two fires that made up the Mendocino Complex fires, is the largest fire in California’s history.
Strong winds, low humidity and hot temperatures caused the fire to grow quickly, according to fire officials.
California endured 7,570 fires in 2018, which burned more than 1.8 million acres across the state.
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