A fast-moving wildfire in Lake and Napa counties in Northern California has destroyed hundreds of homes as the blaze spread to consume more than 60,000 acres by Monday morning.
The CalFIRE agency reported Monday that there has been a report of a civilian fatality in the fire area. The local sheriff’s office is still investigating that report.
As of 8 a.m. Monday morning, the fire was just 5% contained, according to CalFIRE. Hundreds of structures were destroyed along with the hundreds of homes that had already burned down by Monday morning.
More than 5,000 residents in Lake County remain without power as more than 1,250 firefighting personnel struggle to contain the fast-moving blaze, which is being fed by dry, windy conditions in the area. Thousands have been ordered to evacuate their homes.
Four firefighters were reportedly injured with while fighting the blaze on Saturday, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. They were taken to UC Davis Medical Center with second-degree burns, but all were listed in stable condition.
As the Valley Fire rages in Lake and Napa counties, the Butte Fire has consumed more than 70,000 acres in nearby Butte County, and was just 30% contained as of Monday morning. That fire has destroyed 135 homes and threatened more than 6,000 other structures as nearly 4,500 firefighting personnel work to contain the fast-moving flames.
“The drought conditions have led to increased fire activity all summer long,” CalFIRE public information officer Daniel Berlant told the Chronicle. “But with triple-digit temperatures up and down the state last week, it caused the grass, brush and trees to be tinder-dry. Then, as we saw temperatures begin to cool down, we saw winds increase, and it’s those winds that continue to fan many of these fires.”
Duane Harper, general manager at Hardester’s Market & Hardware in Middletown, described driving through an “apocalyptic firestorm” as he watched his home burn to the ground in his rear-view mirror. Despite losing his home, the store survived the fire.
“We had a couple of minutes to get out,” Harper told the paper. “The flames were 100 feet. You haven’t lived until you’ve seen that.”
As of 8 a.m. Monday morning, mandatory evacuation ordered remain in effect for the following areas:
Bottle Rock Road, High Valley Road, Hwy 175 Cobb, Hwy 29 Tubbs Lane (Calistoga, Napa County) to Hwy 29/Hwy 53( Lower Lake, Lake County) Butts Canyon Road to Napa County Line, including Berreyssa Estates. Communities of Cobb, Seigler Canyon, Loch Lomond, Middletown and Hidden Valley Lakes
San Andreas at Pope, West Murray Creek, Lewis, Miller, San Andreas Elementary, Goldstrike, Mountain Ranch East to Windmill, Wimbledon Drive, Forest Hill, and Turner Court. Please leave the area immediately.
(Amador County) Canyon View, Fig Tree Lane, and Ponderosa Way; Tabeau Road south of Arrowhead to Amador Road, Ranch Drive and Aqueduct Grove Road.
(Calaveras County) Town of Mokelumne Hill, East of Hwy 49 from the Amador/Calaveras County line South to Goldstrike Road. South on Goldstrike Road to the Community of San Andreas. Rural areas East of San Andreas to Mountain Ranch Road. Mountain Ranch Road to Calaveritas Road to Fourth Crossing. Fourth Crossing to Hwy 49. East side of Hwy 49 South to North side of Hwy 4 (Angels Camp). North side of Hwy 4 East to Town of Arnold. All of SR 26 from Mokelumne Hill, North to the Amador/Calaveras County line. To include the communities of Glencoe, Westpoint, and Wilseyville. San Andreas at Pope, West Murray Creek, Lewis, Miller, San Andreas Elementary, Goldstrike, Mountain Ranch East to Windmill, Wimbledon Drive, Forest Hill, and Turner Court.