Homeless suspected of starting riverbed fire in Paso Robles


A persons cooking in the Salinas riverbed in Paso Robles is suspected of starting a fire on Monday afternoon.

Shortly after 1 p.m., a 911 caller reported a fire burning south of the Niblick Bridge, according to the Paso Robles Fire Department. Firefighters arrived and found a column of smoke rising from the riverbed.

Initially, firefighters struggled to access the blaze because of thick, overgrown vegetation. Once firefighters established access, they contained the blaze to one third of an acre.

Cal Fire personnel assisted Paso Robles firefighters with extinguishing the blaze. 

Fire investigators determined the blaze appeared to originate from an area used for cooking. Authorities did not locate anyone in the area after the fire started.

Separately, goats have been brought into Paso Robles to graze firebreaks in the Salinas riverbed. The goats began grazing on Monday off North River Road. The herd will move south this week, resulting in periodic traffic delays on Wednesday.