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Sparks from saw started Tehachapi wildfire

The West Fire in Tehachapi, located 70 miles north of Los Angeles, broke out Tuesday, July 27, 2010, destroying homes and forcing residents to evacuate.

August 2, 2010 12:00:00 AM PDT
Investigators have cited two men for inadvertently causing the recent Kern County wildfire from sparks caused while cutting pipe.Officials from the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said the men were using a mechanical saw to cut steel pipe last Monday. Sparks from the pipe set nearby brush on fire.

The agency said Daniel Gentle, 47, and Michael Kulikoff, 23, were issued misdemeanor citations for causing a fire using mechanized equipment. They will have to pay a fine.

Officials said the two men had permission to work in the area.

The West Fire, which burned approximately 1,658 acres near Tehachapi, was 100 percent contained as of Monday morning.

The Bull Fire, which has scorched approximately 16,442 acres near Kernville, was 95 percent contained as of Monday morning. Full containment is expected on Aug. 10.

AP contributed to this report.