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20 arson cases drain Stockton fire resources | Crime

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20 arson cases drain Stockton fire resources
Crime

STOCKTON, CA - Firefighters believe the 20 fires that broke out in the past two weeks in the Mormon Slough area of Stockton were arson.

On Saturday, someone set three of those fires. On Sunday, there were two more fires around Hazelton Avenue and Stanlislaus Street.

Those fires are taxing Stockton fire crews.

"Grassfires like that take rigs out for a long time," Battalion Chief Mike Lilienthal said. "There are lots of hotspots. With the high temperatures, we can't leave until it's under control and safe."

As they battle those fires, they continue to fight house fires, like the one on Wallace Avenue and Princeton Street on Sunday.

"Almost half the engines in Stockton are committed right now to either the Mormon Slough or to this structure fire," Lilienthal said.

Triple digit temperatures have also exhausted firefighters. One firefighter was treated on scene for heat exhaustion during Sunday's house fire. On Saturday, another firefighter in the Mormon Slough area was hurt when a glass bottle exploded.

By Suzanne Phan, sphan@news10.net

Crime

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