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Three arrested after redwood burns in Organ Donors Grove

Cal Fire and the National Park Service responded to a call about a fire in Organ Donor Grove at 8:25 p.m. Thursday.

According to call logs, the reporting party advised that they had started the fire. The blaze burned a redwood tree that Cal Fire Battalion Chief Tom Nix estimated was roughly 125 feet tall with a 10-foot diameter. Cal Fire was able to contain the fire to only that tree. The tree fell on its own at about 8 a.m. on Friday morning, Nix said.

Two fire engines remain at the scene to make sure that the fire doesn’t reignite, Nix said.

“Typically, once the fire is contained, we go and check it every day until there is no smoke for three days,” Nix said.

CDF and NPS arrested three suspects in connection with the fire. Daniel Peterson, 21, of California; Adam Zapotok, 20, of Crescent City, and Nicole Reid, 22, a transient, were arrested and booked into the Del Norte County jail at 10 p.m. on charges of vandalism and arson.

Nix declined to comment on the arrests because the cause of the fire is still under investigation.

Nix would like to remind the public that burn permits are required to have a fire in Del Norte. Permits are only good on permissive burn days. Nix also warned that the high winds in the area make it much easier for a fire to escape and spread.

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