Fire at Milpitas Landfill Burning in Santa Clara County, California

Incident Summary

Milpitas Firefighters are on-scene of a large brush fire that has extended into a nearby landfill, the Newby Island Landfill located in the 1600 block of Dixon Landing Road on Monday, around 1254 hours PDT.

Photo Credit | NV Seismological Lab

Fire Assets

Fire personnel and assets included those from the local area from Milpitas, Fremont and San Jose Fire Departments.  Additionally, Water tenders and Med30 were requested.

Using Local Resources

A front end loader or also called a material mover was brought in to move through Division alpha and allow for fire companies to temporarily shutdown their lines.  They would wait for the loader to go through the division and then restart their lines.

Water Supply Challenges

Shortly into the fire incident, Alpha, Delta and others would report to the IC that   brown water would be coming through their lines then hydrants all went dry.  It was stated a possible break of the water pipe underneath the ground had been compromised.  IC began asking for water tenders to respond to the fire ground immediately of the reported break.

Concerns of limited water on the fire would also bring observation the debris pile was beginning to heat up and threatening northern exposures. Fire Officials worked with the facility’s manager to make sure any and all employees were out of the area.

Water supply would eventually be secured by an engine hooked up to a hydrant on Fremont Blvd. into the City of Fremont and back through several engines to fire ground.  Challenges faced firefighters masterstreams that were not reaching the piles.

After repositioning equipment and personnel, they began to finally get water on the fire in all the right places and started to knock it down. This was about two-and-a-half hours into their incident. This fire was not without challenges that they all worked through quite well.

Eyewitness Accounts

Social Media eyewitness accounts told/showed large heavy columns of black smoke from I-80, right off the freeway on Dixon Road. Roads were said to be blocked to local traffic.

Smoke also could be seen near the Great Mall in Milpitas and around the South Bay area.


There was no preliminary cause of the original brush fire that led into the burning of debris piles at the landfill but know there will be a full investigation by Fire Officials.


No firefighter or civilian injuries were reported.

(c) 2020 NW Fire Blog – Updated 5/25/2020 1530 PDT