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Man's body found in Clover fire in Shasta County

September 11, 2013|By Samantha Schaefer and Hailey Branson-Potts
  • Firefighters mop up along Lower Gas Point Road after the Clover fire in Shasta County.
Firefighters mop up along Lower Gas Point Road after the Clover fire in Shasta… (Andreas Fuhrmann / Associated…)

This post has been corrected. See note at the bottom for details.

A man’s body was found within the perimeter of the Clover fire in Northern California’s Shasta County, local sheriff’s officials said Wednesday.

The burnt remains of Brian Stanley Henry, 56, were found by officers conducting a welfare check Tuesday night on Coal Pit Road, according to the Shasta County Sheriff’s Office.

The wind-whipped Clover fire has been destroying homes and burning through brush since Monday afternoon when it started near Cloverdale Road, California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection officials said.

Flames leaped over roads, and as homeowners tried to flee, some jumped into pools of water to escape flames, the Redding Record Searchlight reported.

Containment for the fire -- which so far has destroyed 30 homes -- remained at 40% Wednesday. Firefighters hope to have it completely contained by Sunday, said Cal Fire spokesman David Ballard.

The blaze has charred 7,012 acres, or roughly 11 square miles, Ballard said. Firefighters initially thought the blaze had consumed 7,400 acres, but as smoke cleared from the area, they were able to create a more accurate map of the blaze, he said.

Officials are still working on repairing power poles to restore service to customers in the area, said Lori Mathiesen, a Cal Fire information officer. 

In addition to the homes, the Clover fire has destroyed 50 outbuildings and damaged 30 other structures, officials said, and it now threatens hundreds more.

The fire was being fought by 39 fire crews as of Wednesday, according to Cal Fire. Five air tankers, 25 bulldozers and 1,346 firefighters were battling the blaze. Its cause is under investigation.

At its peak, the fire was burning 500 acres an hour, officials said.

The fire grew quickly Monday because of dry conditions and gusty winds, officials said. Residents had minutes to evacuate, and one school district official described the smoke minutes after the blaze ignited as a “wall of smoke.”

For the record, 8:33 p.m., Sept. 11: A previous version of this post incorrectly named the paper as the Record Searchlight.

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Twitter: @Sam_Schaefer | @haileybranson

Samantha.Schaefer@latimes.com | hailey.branson@latimes.com

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