The “Apple Fire” started July 31, 2020 near Cherry Valley, California and is spreading north of Beaumont and Banning. As of August 3, 2020 it has burned over 26,000 acres.
At least three ignition points were found, which all merged into one fire.
Investigators have concluded the fire was caused by hot carbon particles from the exhaust system of a diesel-powered truck, which is a common cause of vegetation fires along roadways.
Riverside County and Oak Glen residents are under evacuation orders. Forest Falls, Pioneertown, and Rim Rock are all under an evacuation warning.
An estimate of 2,565 personnel are assigned to take down the fire, including
a number of air tankers. Both Tankers 911 & 914 have been heavily involved in fighting the “Apple Fire” both operating out of San Bernardino.
"Day two of the Apple Fire in the Banning Pass. I crested the north end of Lambs Canyon before 07:00 heading back into the fire and was greeted with the smoke laying down, no wind, everything peaceful and calm..... That lasted till about noon when the wind came up, around 40mph, and almost had a burned over at the end of Bluff Rd. A busy day... That last pic of the DC-10 is kind of my favorite, lead in
by a King Air lead plane, lead out by a Hawk!” -RK Smithley
We’ve received a number of amazing photos of our Tankers in action & we are grateful to those who have sent them in. We will continue to update this blog post as the fight continues, for now we hope you enjoy these great photos. Thus far both Tanker 911 & 914 have completed over 39 drops on the “Apples Fire” that's nearly 366,600 gallons of retardant.