Malfunction in farming equipment sparked 380-acre fire in Solano County

A malfunction in a piece of farming equipment is suspected as the cause of a 380-acre fire in a field at state highways 113 and 12 near Rio 
Vista on Wednesday afternoon, Montezuma Fire Protection District Chief Michael O'Connor said.

The fire started around 3:30 p.m. in a safflower field, a thistle-like plant that yields dry oil used in paints, food and medicine. The farmer harvesting the crop tried to extinguish the fire but it spread to an annual grass field for cattle, O'Connor said.

At one point as many as 150 personnel, 16 engines and six water tenders were fighting the fire, which was contained around 7:30 p.m., O'Connor said. Firefighters remained at the scene until around 11 p.m.

Sustained winds of 35 mph with gusts up to 55 mph were present in that area of east Solano County Wednesday but the blaze was not in a PG&E Public Safety Power Shutoff area, O'Connor said. None of the half-dozen structures in the area burned.

Firefighters from city and fire protection districts of Dixon, Vacaville, Fairfield and Suisun, the River Delta Fire District, Travis Air Force Base and Isleton Fire Department also responded to the fire.