A fire in the rice dryers at Sun West Milling in Biggs was the second in the last couple months, both causing just minor damage.

A fire in the rice dryers at Sun West Milling in Biggs was the second in the last couple months, both causing just minor damage.

The most recent happened on Sunday around 2:30 p.m. when rice in the dryers reached an ignition point, said Battalion Chief Chris Haile. Employees dumped water on the problem, and there was a commercial structure fire response.

Engines from Gridley, Biggs, Butte County and Sutter County were called, and all five dryers in the area were smoking when they arrived. They made sure the fire didn't spread to the piping.

These types of dryers are typically propane or natural gas and reach fairly high heats, so they garner plenty of attention. Haile said he wouldn't call it a common problem, however.

"It's been known to happen, but the people who work at these places have a really close eye on what's going on," he said.