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Sonoma County Orders Returning Residents In Kincade Burn Area Not to Clean Property

SANTA ROSA (CBS SF) -- An emergency order that forbids residents reentering the area of the Kincade Fire from cleaning their property has been issued by the Sonoma County Health Officer.

"The burnt remains of building materials, such as siding, roofing tiles and insulation results in dangerous ash that may contain asbestos, heavy metals and other materials that are hazardous to health," according to a news release from Dr. Celeste Philip.

"Additionally, household hazardous waste, such as paint, gasoline, cleaning products, pesticides, compressed gas cylinders and chemicals stored in homes, garages or outbuildings that may have burned in the fire can also produce hazardous materials."

Exposure to hazardous substances can lead to long-term public health and environmental risks, particularly from inhaled dust particles and contaminated drinking water.

Property owners and others in the fire area are advised that they "should not enter the burn footprint of structures without personal protective equipment such as protective eyewear, gloves and long sleeves and pants, and closed-toe footwear, such as boots."

In addition the order tells residents not to clean their property and advises that debris bins will not be provided until further notice.

Meanwhile, crews continued to make progress on fighting the Kincade Fire, on Saturday night reporting 74 percent containment, up from 72 percent Saturday morning, according to Cal Fire.

The fire has burned 77,758 acres and destroyed 372 structures, including 175 homes, Cal Fire said. Four firefighters have been injured fighting the blaze.

There were 4,032 firefighting personnel on the Kincade Fire as of 7 p.m. Saturday, down from 4,531 as of Saturday morning, Cal Fire said.

The fire started around 9:30 p.m. on Oct. 23, and its cause remains under investigation. Cal Fire estimates the fire will be fully contained by Nov. 7.

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