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Fire Update For Northern California

Credit Dottie Simmons
Listener Dottie Simmons shared this photo of the smoke over Bridgeville this afternoon.

[KHSU is updating this post as the situation evolves.]

As of Wednesday, at least 22 fires are burning across northern California counties with little to no containment.

11:18 Weds: Air quality statement: "Smoke from fires to the south (Mendocino Lake Complex and from the Santa Rosa area fires) may continue to affect southern Humboldt County depending on proximity. The weather forecast is for winds to continue to push this smoke to the south over the weekend. Air quality in southern Humboldt is forecast to be “Good” to “Moderate” with the possibility for “Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups” in the late evening. "

Del Norte and Trinity Counties should see “Good” to “Moderate” air quality.

9:24 AM Weds: Here is CalFire's at-a-glance report of the major fires, their impact, and containment. 

8:48 AM Weds: The death toll has risen to 17. The Mendocino Complex Fire near Willits, where there is a reported fuel shortage, has grown to almost 30,000 acres with 5% containment. Unfavorable firefighting weather is forecast for this afternoon. The Tubbs Fire grew to 28,000 acres with 0% containment; currently threatening 16,000 structures. The Atlas Fire is at 3% containment.

3:02: Sen. Mike McGuire says that moisture levels are dropping and winds will be picking up around the region, prompting a Red Flag warning.

2:13 PM: Atlas, Tubbs, Redwood Valley Complex, Nuns fires still all zero percent contained

Those wishing to donate items like: 

• Water
• Can openers
• Sleeping pads/cots
• Toothbrushes/ tooth paste
• Personal Hygiene Products
• Wipes
• Diapers
• Formula
• Toilet paper
• Cell phone chargers 
• Dog & Cat Food
can do so at Humboldt Bay Fire Station 1, 533 C Street, Eureka until 7pm tonight. 
11:50 AM: The Tubbs Fire in Santa Rosa and Calistoga is 0% contained, according to the Santa Rosa Press Democrat. The fires are "extremely active. This is by no means over for us in any way," says the Napa County sheriff. The fire has destroyed over 500 homes and burned 27,000 acres.

10:53 AM: The Times-Standard reports that a local emergency has been declared after fires have hobbled first responders' ability to communicate. Lost Coast Outpost reports that Humboldt Bay Fire is accepting donations of relief aid until 7:00 PM tonight.

A post shared by CARA GREEN (@caragreenn) on Oct 9, 2017 at 4:25pm PDT

10:49 AM: Food For People says they are canceling their Redway/Garberville market due to their food trucks being turned around.


10:35 AM: CalFire reports that the Blue fire in Blue Lake is now 100% contained. 

10:11 AM: The Redwood Valley fire between Willits and Ukiah has grown to 21,000 acres.

9:00 AM: The North Coast Air Quality Management District has released a statement on the current air quality within Humboldt, Del Norte and parts of Trinity County. NCAQMD states that the recent devastating fire activity to the south (in Mendocino, Sonoma and Napa Counties) reminds everyone that Wildfire season is still in effect.

They also said that overnight smoke from the Redwood Complex fires in Ukiah and the numerous fires in Santa Rosa primarily affected southern and coastal Humboldt County, and also had some minor impacts in southern Trinity County near Hayfork. 

Credit Cal Fire / Twitter
The Blue Fire in Blue Lake as seen on Monday, October 9th.

Critical fire weather conditions subsided as winds shifted onshore and have become lighter. Smoke from the fires will, according to the release, probably decrease Tuesday, due to an anticipated change in transport winds this afternoon. 

Air quality is reported by the district to be "Moderate" to "Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups" with periods of "Unhealthy" as well. Meanwhile, Particulate Matter monitors remain present in Eureka, Scotia, Blue Lake, Smith River, Crescent City, Klamath, Orleans, Weitchpec, Hoopa, Weaverville and Hayfork.

NCAQMD warns sensitive populations, those with respiratory diseases, heart disease, pregnant women, young children and older adults to limit prolonged or heavy activity and time spent outdoors. They also warn that even healthy adults can be affected by smoke. 

7:58 AMHighway 101 reopened overnight and certain emergency services have been restored locally, though cellular service throughout Arcata and Eureka remains down until further notice. 

Credit CalTrans

The Times-Standard reports that some local police agencies lost their non-emergency phone lines, and that AT&T customers in Arcata, McKinleyville, and Eureka are still without service. 

Congressman Jared Huffman described a heroic community response amid "a horrific scene". State Senator Mike McGuire says that help is on the way. 

At least 13 deaths have occurred as a result of the fires, with over 150 people still reported missing. Gov. Jerry Brown has declared a state of emergency in Napa, Sonoma, and Yuba counties due to the effects of multiple fires, including the Tubbs and Atlas fires, which have damaged critical infrastructure, threatened thousands of homes and caused the evacuation of residents. 

Those affected are encouraged to use this resource list.

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