Rare summer thunderstorms spark wildland fires

Smoke rises in the humid morning air on Spring Hill just outside of Mariposa after a small wildland blaze was ignited by lightning.By Dan Tucker GAZETTE PUBLISHER
The weather in Mariposa County Sunday morning started out muggy and warm, unusual for late July.
It got worse.
Around 9 a.m., a flurry of thunderstorm cells battered Mariposa and Madera Counties, sparking a total of 14 lightning strike blazes.
The same scenario happened two years ago, mainly in northern California, that sparked two o...

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