The Rices Fire exploded on Tuesday afternoon in Nevada County, near the South Yuba State Park and approximately 15 miles from Nevada City, forcing mandatory evacuations in the area. The fire currently sits at 520 acres with zero containment.
The fire was believed to have begun with a structure fire around 2 pm and moved into the nearby wilderness at a fast speed, growing to 350 acres by 4 pm. Mandatory evacuations have been announced in the area and the sheriff’s office set up a temporary evacuation point at the Madelyn Helling Library in Nevada City.
Find all the current evacuation map zones here.
The fire is moving at a very fast rate, using extremely dry fuels to move through the rural area of Nevada County, just 60 miles east of Sacramento. According to climate scientist Daniel Swain, the fire is using unprecedented dryness to spread rapidly.
“#RicesFire unfortunately looks to be “going big” on Sierra Nevada western slope, & evacuations are expanding,” wrote Swain on Twitter. “Just checked North Ops fuel moistures, & 100/1000hr levels have plummeted to record lows for calendar date.”
We will continue to report on the situation as more information is made available.