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The Clayton Fire was a wildfire that started on August 13, 2016 just south of Lower Lake in Lake County, California. The fire burned a total of 3,929 acres (15.90 km2) and destroyed 300 buildings, before it was fully contained on August 26. Damin Pashilk, a construction worker from Clearlake was arrested and facing 17 counts of arson related to the Clayton Fire and other fires.[2]

Clayton Fire
The burned out remnants of Dave Johnson's Auto, as seen on Sunday, August 14.
LocationLake County, California
Coordinates38°53′51″N 122°36′24″W / 38.89741°N 122.60664°W / 38.89741; -122.60664Coordinates: 38°53′51″N 122°36′24″W / 38.89741°N 122.60664°W / 38.89741; -122.60664
Date(s)August 13, 2016 (2016-08-13) – August 26, 2016 (2016-08-26)
Burned area3,929 acres (16 km2)
Perpetrator(s)Damin Pashilk
Clayton Fire is located in California
Clayton Fire
Location in California


The fire was first reported at 6:03 pm on August 13 near Highway 29 and Clayton Creek Road.[1] By August 14, the second day, 10 homes had been destroyed and up to 6,000 people had been evacuated from Lower Lake and Clearlake, including St. Helena Hospital Clearlake.[1][3] An evacuation center was opened at Highlands Senior Center and was evacuated the following day.[1]

By August 15, the third day, 5 percent of the fire had been contained, burning a total of 3,000 acres (12 km2), 175 buildings, including the offices of a Habitat for Humanity affiliate,[4] had been destroyed and 1,044 fire personnel were on the ground. Road closures were announced throughout the area, including Clayton Creek Road at Highway 29, Morgan Valley Road, North Spruce Grove Road at Spruce Grove Road, and Jerusalem Grade South Spruce Grove Road. State Route 53 at Highway 29 is closed. New evacuation centers were opened at Twin Pine Casino, Kelseyville High School, and the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Lakeport.[1]

As of August 16, the fourth day, 1,664 fire personnel were on the ground and 20 percent of the fire had been contained. It was reported, at the time, as burning a total of 4,000 acres (16 km2). Additionally, the Clearlake area of the Avenues and neighborhoods from Polk Avenue to Cache Creek, east of Highway 53, have been evacuated.[1] A state of emergency was declared for Lake County by California Governor Jerry Brown. A construction worker from Clearlake, Damin Pashilk, was arrested and is currently being held at the Lake County Jail on 17 counts of arson related to the Clayton Fire and other fires in the area.[2]

On the fifth day, August 17, road closures remained and evacuation centers also remained open, with 40 percent of the fire being contained, burning a total of 3,929 acres (15.90 km2), and 2,327 fire personnel were on the ground. As of August 24, the fire was 98% contained and had destroyed 300 and damaged 28 buildings, and residents were able to return to their homes.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g "Clayton Fire". Incident Information. Cal Fire. Retrieved 15 August 2016.
  2. ^ a b c St. John, Paige; Parvini, Sarah; Winton, Richard. "Arson suspect held on $5.1-million bail as firefighters battle Lake County blaze". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 16 August 2016.
  3. ^ Sernoffsky, Evan; Ho, Vivian. "Clayton Fire devastates Lake County town; thousands flee". SFGate. San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 15 August 2016.
  4. ^ McCallum, Kevin. "Lower Lake devastated by Clayton fire". Press Democrat. Retrieved 15 August 2016.