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By Miriam Raftery

Photo:  file photo

December 5, 2017 (Jamul) -- A lost hiker set off a flare that sparked a brush fire in the Lyons Valley area of Jamul this afternoon. Fortunately, firefighters were able to swiftly contain the blaze, which charred only half an acre.

But it could have been far worse.  A flare set off by a lost hunter in Ramona back in October 2003 ignited the Cedar Fire, which burned over 280,000 acres, destroyed2.820 structures and killed 15 people.

Fire officials ask that during times of high fire danger, such as this week’s red flag warning, the public help prevent fires.

  • Avoid any activities that could trigger sparks.
  • Obey bans on burning leaves or trash.
  • Don’t’ light campfires except in designated campgrounds with campfire rings.
  • Safely discard cigarettes.
  • If towing a vehicle, be sure the chain is not dragging on the ground, which can cause sparks. 
  • Never park or drive on dry grass.
  • Don’t shoot in dry, grassy areas.
  • Be aware that if you ignore these rules and start a fire through negligent actions, you could be held responsible for the damage that it causes.

You can help keep our communities safe by following these guidelines, and by reporting any sign of smoke or flames immediately by calling 911.

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This person should be punished for such a stupid act. Some time in jail and payment for the costs incurred fighting the fire. How much does it cost to deploy a fire team to even a "small" fire?
Public education would help but stupid people don't read or watch the news.