Gender Reveal Party started El Dorado Fire
September 17, 2020
by Alyssa Erdley
8,600 acres have burned and many residents have been evacuated in Yucaipa because of a fire started by a gender reveal party. A device used to blow blue or pink smoke to reveal the gender of an expected baby at a party in El Dorado Ranch Park on Saturday started the fire near Redlands.
A press release from the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said:
CAL FIRE Law Enforcement has determined the El Dorado Fire, burning near Oak Glen in San Bernardino County, was caused by a smoke generating pyrotechnic device, used during a gender reveal party. The fire began at 10:23 am on September 5, 2020 in the El Dorado Ranch Park in Yucaipa. The fire spread from the park to the north on to Yucaipa Ridge that separates Mountain Home Village and Forest Falls from the City of Yucaipa. CAL FIRE reminds the public that with the dry conditions and critical fire weather, it doesn't take much to start a wildfire. Those responsible for starting fires due to negligence or illegal activity can be held financially responsible and criminally responsible.
The hosts of the party were still on the scene when firefighters arrived, according to Bennet Milloy, spokesman for the CDFFP. He said they "understood the seriousness of the fire" and the gravity of the situation.
Gender reveal parties began to become popular in the late 2000s, as a modern form of baby shower. Posting YouRube videos of gender reveals is another trendy activity. Such parties are decried by the LGBT and intersex communities as reinforcing gender stereotypes and removing agency from the unborn regarding their future preferred gender.
The fire's current status is only 7 percent containment during hot conditions. Wind gusts up to 10 mph are expected this afternoon that may result in fire plume buildup and could ground fire-fighting aircraft. A Santa Ana wind event is expected to begin Tuesday night and last through Wednesday, which will make fire containment much more difficult.
Battling the blaze now are 6 helicopters, 10 hand crews, 60 engines, 6 fixed-wing planes, 10 dozers, and 10 water tenders - a total of 619 personnel.