Mulch Fire In Thousand Palms Leaves Smoke Throughout Coachella Valley

Tiani Jadulang

If you didn’t smell the smoke today, you certainly did see it.

Officials say the fire was quickly contained but was visible throughout the Coachella Valley for several hours later.

“I saw the fire as we came down out of Sky Valley.. And I made the comment weird to see a fire this time of year because we just had a rain. You know, the ground’s kind of wet.” says Sky Valley resident Kitty Pallesen.

No matter what side of the valley you were on, the smokey haze caught everyone’s attention earlier this morning.

The reason for the smoke… a mulch fire at the SA recycling property in Thousand Palms.

“I didn’t smell it because of the way the wind is blowing. But however, I was on my way to the recycling center… and it doesn’t look like I’ll be going up there this morning.” Pallesen says.

Starting around 3:47 a.m. this morning, Riverside County fire received a call on a reported mulch fire.

“The latest update from the incident commander is that the fire is 60… 60% contained… but he’s extended the commitment time until 1 p.m. so they’re still working on getting it controlled 100%” Maggie Clein De La Rosa, an official with Riverside County Fire Department says.

A shelter in place was also sent out, advising locals to steer clear from all surrounding areas to the fire.

“They did issue a shelter in place advisory because early this morning the wind was blowing and they were concerned about the wind maybe laying down across the valley in some of the houses.”

Just down the street of the fire, locals were hopeful.

“I hope it burns itself out quickly… but everybody around here seems to be safe. So that’s good news.”

At this time the fire’s contained and the cause of the fire is still unknown, and this is currently an ongoing investigation.

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