Monday, October 15, City Fire and Electric Department personnel were on scene to put out a vegetation fire caused by downed power lines. It was determined that a splice in the line (a street light circuit) failed causing the line to drop to the ground on a paved surface near the intersection of Siskiyou and Harmony Lane. This caused a section of this same line to fail near the intersection of Siskiyou and Walker Avenue. This failed section fell onto juniper bushes and the sparking that occurred before the entire circuit faulted and shut down caused the junipers to catch fire.
The response from both Ashland Fire and Rescue and the City Electric Department quickly extinguished the blaze and all electrical hazards were removed from the site. While still relatively common in our local landscapes, junipers are highly flammable vegetation and is recommended by the Fire Department to be removed and replaced with fire resistant plants when possible. Check the Ashland Fire and Rescue website for Firewise programs and resources at www.ashland.or.us/firewise