by F.T. Norton
Appeal Staff Writer

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June 6, 2007
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Larson resources quickly snuff Sedge fire

A beaming Margie Quirk waved her hands above her head and jumped up and down after an airtanker dropped a load of fire retardant on the blaze burning yards from her home.

"That's amazing," the Persia Road homeowner said.

Just 30 minutes before, Quirk was in an admitted panic.

She'd hitched up her trailer and was ready to move her three horses. If she had to, she was prepared to run up the street to save her neighbor's dog.

A fire that started just before 3 p.m. off Sedge Road, fueled by ample brush and 10 mph winds, was moving fast and threatening at least four homes. It had the potential to wipe out more.

Until the air attacks came.

Four tankers, a helicopter with a bucket, and 48 firefighters on the ground quickly snuffed out what could have been a Brunswick Canyon disaster.

"I hate to say it, but we're due for a fire," Quirk said pointing out the westside charring that still remains from the 2004 Waterfall fire and last season's Linehan fire scar to the north.

Every year since the Waterfall fire, crews have cleared defensible space between the untouched hills and the houses that line Deer Run Road.

East Carson City, with its miles of piñon, sagebrush and grass, is a tinder box waiting to ignite, fire officials agree. While dozens of homes are nestled in the perfect spot against the hills to overlook the picturesque east valley, their placement also backs them up to all that fuel.

It was fortunate that an air attack was available within 10 minutes of the first fire call, said Mark Struble, spokesman for the Sierra Front Interagency Dispatch Center and the U.S. Bureau of Land Management.

"They had done their job at Larson and were sitting on the ramp here. All of the sudden we heard the call for Sedge and it was only a couple minutes and I heard those big engines," Struble said. "Once they go wheels up it's only about four minutes 'til they were there. We literally had the resources in our back pocket to paint that fire pink right away. That isn't always normal."

According to Struble the fire was contained by 5 p.m. at 10 acres. Members of the Carson City Fire Department, Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Forest Service responded.

• Contact reporter F.T. Norton at or 881-1213.

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The Nevada Appeal Updated Jun 7, 2007 03:26PM Published Jun 6, 2007 03:00AM Copyright 2007 The Nevada Appeal. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.