Erskine Fire

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Erskine Fire
CA SR178 Erskine Fire cleanup traffic 2016-06-28.jpg
Burned areas along partially re-opened SR 178 near South Lake, June 28
LocationLake Isabella, Kern County, California
Coordinates35°37′01″N 118°27′11″W / 35.617°N 118.453°W / 35.617; -118.453Coordinates: 35°37′01″N 118°27′11″W / 35.617°N 118.453°W / 35.617; -118.453
Cost$19.3 million
Date(s)June 23, 2016 (2016-06-23) - July 11, 2016 (2016-07-11)
Burned area47,864 acres (194 km2)
CauseUnder investigation
Briefing map of the fire from June 28th.
Briefing map of the fire from June 28th.

The Erskine Fire was a wildfire that was burning in the Lake Isabella area of Kern County.[1] It was the second-largest wildfire of the 2016 California wildfire season. It was also the first fire of the year to have fatalities and is the 15th most destructive fire in state history.[3]


The fire, which was first reported around 4:00pm on Thursday, June 23, quickly grew to over 8,000 acres (32 km2) and destroyed over 100 structures, including at least 80 residences, in the first few hours.[4]

By mid-day Friday the fire had grown to over 19,000 acres (77 km2) and is still 0% -contained.[2] By 6:00pm on Friday, officials confirmed that the fire had grown to over 30,000 acres (120 km2) with 5% contained.[5]

Friday evening Governor Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency for Kern County.[6]

On June 28, Kern County Fire Department confirmed that 257 homes had been destroyed by the fire.[7]

Two Red Cross Shelters were set up north of Lake Isabella [8]

On July 11 the fire was 100% contained.[3]


On Friday, June 24, officials confirmed that 2 people had been killed by the fast moving fire.[2] Officials also stated that cadaver dogs were being used to search for possible additional victims.[5] The deceased victims were an elderly couple who died while attempting to flee their home.[9]

On Saturday June 25, a third set of remains was found, though the body had been burned so badly that it is unclear on whether or not the remains belong to a human or an animal.[10] Monday morning, the Kern County Sheriff's Office confirmed that the remains belonged to an animal and not to a human.[11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Erskine Fire". InciWeb. Retrieved June 29, 2016.
  2. ^ a b c Vives, Ruben (24 June 2016). "Officials confirm 2 deaths in out-of-control fire in Kern County". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 24 June 2016.
  3. ^ a b "Erskine Fire officially 100% contained". 11 July 2016. Retrieved 12 July 2016.
  4. ^ "BREAKING NEWS: Officials estimate 80 homes lost in Lake Isabella wildfire". BakersfieldNow. 24 June 2016. Retrieved 24 June 2016.
  5. ^ a b Kuzj, Steve (24 June 2016). "2 Dead, Nearly 30,000 Acres Burned in Erskine Fire in Lake Isabella". KTLA. KTLA. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
  6. ^ Healy, Patrick; Lloyd, Jonathan (24 June 2016). "State of Emergency Declared for Deadly Kern County Wildfire". NBC Los Angeles. Retrieved 25 June 2016.
  7. ^ "KCFD confirms 257 homes destroyed in Erskine Fire". KERO. 28 June 2016. Retrieved 1 July 2016.
  8. ^ "Erskine Fire News Release". The National Wildfire Coordinating Group. 1 July 2016. Retrieved 1 July 2016.
  9. ^ Johnson, Alex (26 June 2016). "Death Toll Could Rise in Central California Wildfire, Authorities Warn". NBC News. Retrieved 27 June 2016.
  10. ^ "Possible human remains found in deadly California wildfire". Associated Press. Retrieved June 26, 2016.
  11. ^ Pastore, Jeanne (27 June 2016). "KCSO says remains found Saturday in area burned by Erskine Fire were animal remains". KGET-TV. Retrieved 27 June 2016.

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