Wildfires Rage Through Wine Country, North Coast — and Anaheim Hills

Napa fire (Josh Edelson / AFP / Getty)
Josh Edelson / AFP / Getty

Massive wind-fueled wildfires burned out of control in Napa and Sonoma counties early Monday, destroying an unknown number of structures, forcing school closures and the evacuation of thousands of people as major thoroughfares were shut down by the fast-moving infernos.

At the same time, a massive brushfire is burning out of control in the Anaheim Hills in Orange County in Southern California, adding to the demand for scarce resources statewide.

According to the Santa Rosa Press Democrat, as many as 14 wildfires burned out of control overnight, threatening Wine Country and the entire North Coast region early Monday.

The San Diego Union Tribune reports that an estimated 1500 structures have burned to the ground, with virtually no containment on the 14 fires raging out of control.  Tens of thousands of people across three counties — Napa, Sonoma, and Mendocino — are under both mandatory and voluntary evacuation orders, and Gov. Jerry Brown has declared a state of emergency there, mobilizing the National Guard.
CalFire reports at least one fatality, and 2 injured, in a Mendocino County blaze. 1500 homes and businesses reportedly burned down, hospitals were evacuated, public schools were closed, and power and cell tower outages were widespread, according to news reports from the region.
The largest fire, dubbed the “Tubbs Fire,” started in scenic Calistoga in Napa County, and spread west toward the larger town of Santa Rosa, racing over the dense growth of the hillsides, quickly exploding from 200 acres to 20,000 acres by 7:00 a.m. PDT, engulfing 54 square miles by 9:00 a.m. PDT, according to a North Bay NBC affiliate.

According to the Press Democrat, resources from the state have not been forthcoming, and local officials are desperate for more help.

Weather.com is reporting on a second blaze, named the “Atlas Peak” fire, which has already consumed 31 square miles, forcing fire-fighters to spread resources as near-hurricane force winds fueled the intensity of the multiple firestorms.

The local Napa Valley Register reported that complete strangers are helping each other — including one family, who were enjoying their Wine Country tour one moment, and fleeing for their lives the next, picking up another tourist along the way.

Tim Donnelly is a former California State Assemblyman and Author, currently on a book tour for his new book: Patriot Not Politician: Win or Go Homeless.  He also ran for governor in 2014.

FaceBook: https://www.facebook.com/tim.donnelly.12/

Twitter:  @PatriotNotPol


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