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Sonoma County declares state of emergency as crews clamp down on Point Fire

State of Emergency declared in Sonoma County for Point Fire 06:38

Cal Fire crews were holding acreage and containment of the Point Fire steady Monday evening as Sonoma County officials declared a state of emergency.

The county announced that officials had declared a local emergency for the Point Fire at around 6:30 p.m. Monday evening. The declaration will allow for state and federal disaster aid. A post on X said the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors will meet within one week days to ratify the proclamation.  

Crews worked overnight to increase containment of the wildfire burning east-southeast of Lake Sonoma. Cal Fire's incident update at 6:02 a.m. indicated one firefighter was injured on Sunday and had to be taken to an area hospital for treatment. 

Cal Fire told CBS News Bay Area that officials believe the firefighter suffered a neck injury.

On Monday evening, Cal Fire reported that the injured firefighter remains in the hospital for evaluation of a non-burn, non-life threatening injury. Officials also said the fire had burned 1,190 acres and remained at 20% containment. Cal Fire confirmed that two residential structures were destroyed by the fire so far, though the damage inspection assessment continues.

The continued efforts to contain the fire came as multiple new wildfires broke out in Manteca and Colusa and Calaveras counties Monday afternoon.  

Officials said for Tuesday's operation, Cal Fire planned to keep the same resource commitment working the fire as they had on Monday. Crews will work to reinforce containment lines and conduct heavy mop-up operations.  

On Sunday night, crews took advantage of favorable conditions to continue building and strengthening control lines.

Cal Fire said at least 400 firefighters were working the fire from multiple agencies from Northern California, supported by numerous firefighting air tankers from throughout the state flying fire suppression missions as conditions allow.

The cause of the fire has not been determined.


Neighbors patrol fire lines as crews battle the Point Fire

As crew worked to increase containment of the Point Fire Monday, one resident was patrolling the fire lines and keeping evacuated neighbors informed about their homes.

Point Fire neighbor Fred Peterson
Point Fire neighbor Fred Peterson KPIX

"Through our chief Marshall Turberville, we've done so much preparation that the firefighters coming up here felt pretty confident that they could hold the fire to the Mountain View Ranch Road. And they did," explained area resident Fred Peterson.

When the evacuation order came down Sunday, Peterson stayed behind to watch firefighters stop the flames just across the street from his house.

"This is the fire line," he said. "But there's unburned between us and the fire."

So he spent the day doing his own patrolling along the fire line, keeping evacuated neighbors informed of what was going on, and even helping mark water sources in case they're needed by fire crews.

"Yes, it has gotten, sadly, too much part of the routine," Peterson said of the fires.

"The fire is basically just right over this ridge," Paul Hawley said from his winery property. "It came down off of Bradford Mountain."

Just down the hill from the fire break, Paul and John Hawley made it back to the family winery. With the power still out they had no choice but to came back to get the generator fired up.

"If the barrels get up to 80°," he explained. "You get barnyard kinds of characters so it's really important to store the wine and keep it cool all the time."

Cal Fire spent the day trying to get better containment around the Point Fire, hitting hot spots that popped up along the valley. This is the first major fire in the area in four years.

The 2020 Walbridge Fire burned in almost the exact same area, threatening the very same homes and vineyards around Dry Creek Valley.

"Yeah, it looks like this fire came right along the burn scar of the last fire," Paul Hawley said. 

So after several years, fire has returned with a sudden reminder that two good rainy seasons do not eliminate the threat of wildfire. 

By Wilson Walker

Post Fire, Point Fire maps show spread of California wildfires

Maps show the expanse of the Post Fire in northwest Los Angeles County and the Point Fire in Sonoma County, the two largest blazes raging in California, as well as the extent of smaller wildfires across as the state contends with a mix of hot, dry weather and powerful, gusty winds. 

The Post Fire on Monday spread to more than 15,600 acres, while the Point Fire covered 1,190 acres.  

Officials have released a series of wildfire maps plotting their expansion. Eleven active wildfires of at least 10 acres or more were burning in California early Monday, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, also known as Cal Fire. 



No major wildfires in Wine Country yet, but residents staying on alert

Napa County has not seen any major fires this year, but residents in the region know everything can change in a matter of minutes.

JR Shaffer vividly remembers walking into his backyard to check what he thought was an odd sound nearby.  

"It looked like the sun. It was crazy as hell," said Shaffer. 


By Kenny Choi

Hundreds evacuated as Point Fire in Sonoma County grows

Hundreds of people have been evacuated as the Point Fire in Sonoma County grew quickly on Sunday.

Mandatory evacuations were issued for zone SON-2E2, in the Dry Creek Valley. Zone SON-2E3, also in the Dry Creek Valley in the area north of Mill Creek Road, south of Chemise Road, east of Wallace Creek Road and west of Dry Creek is under an evacuation warning, placing over 4,000 residents on high alert, according to the Sonoma County Sheriff's Office.

An evacuation center has been set up at Laguna High School in Forestville.



Red Flag Warning issued for Napa County interior

Critical fire weather conditions exist Monday for portions of Napa County as gusty winds and low humidity have prompted a Red Flag Warning for the region.

The National Weather Service said gusty northerly winds of 30 to 40 mph will combine with afternoon relative humidity as low as 10% for the interior of Napa County, especially for elevations above about 1,000 feet. 

KPIX First Alert Weather: Current conditions, alerts, maps for your area

The Red Flag Warning was in effect from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday. The Weather Service said large fuels are still retaining some moisture, but grasses and brush are very dry and have contributed to several small grass fires over the past couple of weeks.


Spare the Air Alert issued because of smoke from Point Fire

Sunday's Point Fire in Sonoma County is sending smoke for miles throughout the North Bay which could also reach parts of the East Bay overnight, according to authorities.

As a result, a Spare the Air advisory has been issued for the rest of Sunday night and through Monday for the entire Bay Area.

A smoke trajectory simulation released by the National Weather Service shows a potential for the smoke to reach areas of Contra Costa County such as Concord and Antioch overnight into early Monday morning.

It is illegal for Bay Area residents and businesses to burn wood or manufactured fire logs in fireplaces, woodstoves and inserts, pellet stoves, outdoor fire pits, or any other wood burning devices during a Spare the Air alert.

People who are sensitive to particulates in the air are advised to stay inside with doors and windows closed.


Cal Fire deploys heavy ground forces to battle Point Fire

Officials with Cal Fire offered an update Monday on the ground forces and other equipment currently involved in the fight to contain the Point Fire in Sonoma County.

During Cal Fire's Monday morning update on the incident, officials said the current deployment includes 50 engines, 12 hand crews, 10 dozers and 10 water tenders. 

The agency's Sonoma-Lake-Napa Unit (LNU) social media account shared the details about the firefighters involved Monday morning.

There are also four type-1 helicopters and three fixed-wing aircraft that have been ordered to provide air support for the effort. The total personnel assigned to the fire as of Monday morning is approximately 400.  

By Dave Pehling

Point Fire leads to summer school closures

The Point Fire burning northern Sonoma County has prompted the school district to call off summer school classes in Healdsburg on Monday, according to the County Office of Education.

Healdsburg Unified School District has canceled all summer school classes because of evacuations, power outages and smoke from the fire, the school district said.

The Point Fire burning northwest of Healdsburg began at about 1 p.m. on Sunday on Skaggs Springs Road and by 6:45 p.m. it was up to 300 acres. Evacuations have been ordered for some areas near the fire. 

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