Fire destroys 2 homes


Wendy Alexander/The Madera Tribune

Firefighters walk past one of two homes on Riverview Drive that was destroyed by fire on Tuesday evening.

 

A blaze that started in the Fresno River spread to Riverview Drive and destroyed two homes and damaged two others.


The fire originally started behind Lowe’s on the north side of the Fresno River on Tuesday afternoon.


According to Cal Fire Battalion Chief Anthony Garcia, units were dispatched at 4:54 pm. The fire started from an area where there are homeless camps. Winds of approximately 15-20 miles per hour carried the flames across the river to the homes on the north side of the 1700 block of Riverview Drive.


Shortly after arriving to fight the vegetation fire, Garcia reported the fire had jumped the river and he requested three engines and a water tender. He also requested Madera Police Department’s help in evacuations.


By 5:15 p.m., Madera County Engine 1 and 3 and water tender 1 were on scene and two structures were on fire.


Evacuation was ordered for all homes on Riverview between Orchard Avenue and Central.


Two homes were totally destroyed by the fire, and two other homes were damaged. Five vehicles were also burned in the fire. Twenty homes went without electricity for a period of time


In all, 77 personnel were used to fight the fire. This included eight fire engines, two Cal Fire engines, a ladder truck, a water tender, a Cal Fire hand crew and two EMS units.


According to Chief Garcia, resources came from Madera County, Madera City, Cal Fire, Merced County, and the City of Fresno. Twelve fire trucks arrived to help.


The cause of the fire is still under investigation, according to Chief Garcia.