Arsonist? Two Major Grass Fires Cause Evacuations

People living in east Fresno County forced to evacuate, as two fast moving grass fires burn homes and threaten livestock.

The flames forced Joanie Glover and her daughter grabbed what they could carry.

But it was she left behind that had her worried: dozens of canisters filled with oxygen, which her husband uses for his glass-blowing business.

Joanie Glover says, "We've turned on the sprinklers, we are discussing whether to get on the roof."

As she took of, others worked on getting out livestock like horses.

Susan Long says, "The whole horse community when there is a problem we all pitch in and help each other."

Cal Fire crews say the first fire began just before noon.

Before they could gain the upper hand on that one, another broke out about a mile away.

That fire forced some 50 different units, and nearly 100 fire fighters to be called in.

Cal Fire PIO, Capt. Ryan Michaels says, "With winds that we are experiencing, the flames are spotting out ahead of themselves and getting into large piles of debris, creating new fires secondary fires."

Although several mobile homes and other buildings were destroyed, crews say most were vacant.

Some did what they could to save their property, creating a firebreak.

In the end, about 100 acres destroyed.

Cal Fire crews say they are now investigating the cause.

Some residents in the area say they believe it is the work of an arsonist.