Firefighters from Fresno and Clovis battled a grass fire late Wednesday afternoon on the former Palm Lakes Golf Course just north of Fresno Yosemite International Airport.
Fresno Fire Department took to Twitter and used the streaming app Periscope to show the fire burning behind a wire fence, and firefighters answered questions in the chat as the fire was filmed. Initial estimates put the blaze’s size at five to 10 acres.
Fire lines were established to protect apartment complexes on the north and east side of the property, roughly bounded by Chestnut, Dakota, Ashlan and Peach avenues.
At one point, a tree hanging over the fence and into the street was ignited by the flames, but it appeared to burn out quickly.
Palm Lakes was once a privately owned 18-hole golf course. The city bought it for $1 in 1984 but was never able to make it viable. In 2005, the city closed it.
Battalion Chief Kirk Wanless said the fire department was notified of the fire at 4:18 p.m. The cause of the wind-driven fire is unknown because there were no witnesses.
Firefighters from the California Air Guard, Clovis Fire and CalFire were on scene to help.
Wanless said firefighters will remain at the scene several more hours Wednesday evening and possibly overnight to make sure no hotspots flare up.
There was a small fire across the street on Dakota started by the heat. “No embers went across the street, just the radiant heat itself caught some fuel on fire on the other side of the street,” he said.
Other than the grass and trees, no other property burned, Wanless said. “I don’t know if we’re going to be able to say that there’s any dollar value to the damage,” he said.