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Firefighters have been mopping up the scene of a structure fire that started last night in the hills above Clearlake Oaks. It was reported in the 11000 block of Lakeview Drive around 7:30 p.m. Northshore Fire, Cal Fire and Lake County Fire all responded took down some utility lines. Lake County News reports with the fire threatening some wildland, Cal Fire brought in an air attack with a tanker and copter. Fire officials say it looks to have started in a motorhome alongside a fifth wheel trailer and a doublewide mobile home, all of which burned. No one was reported to have been hurt.

A man from the Bay Area has been arrested in connection with two suspicious fires in Lake County. Cal Fire says Merrill Brown of Hercules, formerly of Lake County, is suspected of starting the Sunday and Monday fires in Lakeport and Kelseyville. Firefighters knocked them down quickly so there was not much damage. Jail Records show Brown was being held on $100,000 bail.

Drunk driving is suspected in a Tuesday night crash in Kelseyville in which two kids were hurt. The CHP says Samantha Fred of Chico was arrested on suspicion of drunken driving after crashing in a parking lot at Lakeside County Park. Her two boys, ages 8 and 12, were passengers in the rear seat of the SUV when Fred went over a concrete curb and crashed into a light pole. The boys were airlifted to UC Davis Medical Center with what the CHP says are moderate injuries. Another passenger, Jazmine McCloud of Kelseyville has minor injuries. Fred is charges with suspicion of felony drunken driving and child cruelty and was booked into the Lake County but is out now on bond of $75,000.

Lake County is answering questions about whether it is safe to swim in Clear Lake. The Water Resources Department says there are two issues at play: The bluegreen algae in the lake and the use of herbicides to control nuisance aquatic vegetation. The WRD says based environmental documentation for the aquatic weed control program the herbicides do not adversely affect the water for swimming. They say Tribal environmental offices may differ in their opinion, but the County’s position is that the areas treated with the herbicides are safe for swimming. As for the near-fluorescent green or blue algae you can see at the surface the WRD says so far no algal toxins have been detected. But are continuing to monitor the lake and as a precaution, swimmers are advised not to drink raw lake water and keep dogs away from the lake so they don’t drink it.

The Ukiah Planning Commission is reportedly leaning toward allowing property owners to build larger secondary dwellings on their property. The Daily Journal reports with more housing greatly needed in the City, some commissioners think it could be an easy way to provide some short-term help and are considering increasing the size of allowed Accessory Dwelling Units to 1,200 square feet, up from 750 square feet. The Planning Commission has been asked to discuss the city’s regulations on these so-called mother-in-law units after new state laws took effect this year to make it easier to build them. Planning Commission decisions are only recommendation – the Ukiah City Council gets the final say.

The picnic area at Highland Springs Reservoir Park will be closed for part of this weekend. It’s for an annual Lake County departmental function and will be closed from 5pm Friday until Noon on Sunday. The public can still use the disc golf course, park trails and the reservoir which you can access from the west side of the park.

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