Power Fire almost out; 1,070 ac. burned

Austen Thibault, The Union Democrat /

The Power Fire that burned 1,070 acres around Beardsley Reservoir is expected to be fully contained by the end of the day, according to the Stanislaus National Forest.

Containment remained at 97 percent this morning, according to Jerry Snyder, U.S. Forest Service spokesman.

A threat warning to 100 homes in surrounding areas has been lifted.

The vast majority of personnel were released from the fire scene, down from nearly 600 to only about 33 today.

The remaining crews will be assigned primarily to mop up and clear hazards like weakened trees.

The remaining 3 percent of the fire is burning in essentially inaccessible, "very, very steep" terrain with natural barriers, Snyder said.

Firefighters will likely let the area burn and keep the surrounding area contained and carefully monitored today, he said.

The area directly affected by the fire will remain closed by forest order until it is deemed safe to enter, Snyder said.

He said other fire sites have remained closed up to a year.

The cause of the Power Fire remains under investigation.

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