Wind-Whipped Wildfires Forcing Evacuations in Napa and Sonoma Counties

10 October, 2017, 00:36 | Author: Malcolm Fuller
  • Napa County fire. Image courtesy of Craig Philpott @CphilpottCraig on Oct. 9 2017

After evacuating the house, which sits at the dead end of a one-lane road in rural Napa County, she and her family watched from a distance as a propane tank exploded and their home's roof caught fire. The fires are believed to have begun late Sunday night near Highway 128 in Napa County and progressed toward Santa Rosa city limits. Cal Fire tweeted that as many as 8,000 homes were threatened in Nevada County, which lies on the western slope of the Sierra Nevada.

The largest, the Tubbs Fire, scorched in excess of 20,000 acres within just a few hours, Santa Rosa Fire reported. "High winds are hindering fire fighting efforts".

Marian Williams lives in the small Sonoma County town of Kenwood.

In recent memory, there hasn't been anything like the wildfires now burning in these relatively densely populated areas of the North Bay, and several cities and towns are likely to be assessing damages for weeks to come, and rebuilding for years to come, including Santa Rosa and Glen Ellen.

"I don't know", Biermann said.

Torres and his wife were at one of the Napa Valley evacuation centers. There were 50-foot flames right behind my house.

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Fountaingrove Inn, Santa Rosa: The 124 room luxury hotel, which was visible from Highway 101, "fell victim to the devastating fire in Sonoma County", according to a message general manager Justin Hayman posted on Facebook. She had fled so fast that she hadn't put on her shoes.

"We were sleeping, but we kept smelling smoke", Chris Thomas, 42, told SF Gate. We have very low humidity.

"There power was out so we had to raise our garage door by hand", she said.

Emergency dispatchers were overwhelmed with 911 calls and advised callers to only call if actual flames were spotted.

Business owner Andy Lahiji stood before a burned out storage warehouse where he said he had lost his inventory of furniture and other property. As of Monday morning, firefighters had made no headway containing it. "I could hear and feel the heat within minutes", Larsen said. "Hopefully insurance takes care of it".

Strong winds have blown the smoke from the fires, which have burned tens of thousands of acres, throughout the Bay Area, air district officials said. Evacuees were directed to the Finley Community Center on West College Avenue and Stony Point Road.

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