CBS Sacramento has kept the California public updated concerning developments as the River Fire spreads since its ignition Wednesday. One of the latest updates, released at 7:25 a.m., reported zero containment. The latest fire has caused more than 4,000 residents in the area of Colfax, CA to evacuate. That number precedes another 5,375 residents who have been placed under evacuation warnings.
The outlet, with information from Cal Fire, stated the wildfire had consumed 24 thousand acres as of Thursday morning. While the report said firefighters were expecting lower temperatures throughout the day, high winds are definitely posing a major threat. According to The Sacramento Bee, Colfax and the surrounding area remains under a red flag warning for wind, with the warning extending through 9 p.m. Additionally, the article also stated that the National Weather Service warned residents that wind gusts could reach up to 35 miles per hour.
The Sacramento Bee said the River Fire sparked yesterday afternoon, “north of Applegate in the Sierra Nevada foothills.” Additionally, they said that while the fire burned 2,400 acres in a matter of about 12 hours, it has also consumed at least 50 structures. Those said structures included homes according to a Cal Fire report from Thursday morning.
The California River Fire Has Forced Residents to Abandon Their Homes
CBS Sacramento shared a visual of the areas experiencing evacuation orders versus evacuation warnings. Red represents the order while yellow represents the warning. See below.
Officials working the area of the River Fire found burned-out homes and vehicles clearly visible off of Mount Olive Road. According to the news outlet, the road lies three miles north of Colfax where evacuations are predominant. As of now, CBS Sacramento stated that officials have no updated numbers other than the 2,400 acres previously mentioned.
The River Fire is Rapidly Spreading Amidst Major Drought and High Winds.
The aforementioned CBS report stated the fire ignited early Wednesday afternoon. Evacuation orders were soon issued to Bear River Campground and the surrounding area. That was at 2:56 p.m.
Less than an hour later at 3:43 p.m., the River Fire had already burned 100 acres with 0% containment. Within the hour, multiple evacuation orders followed.
The report stated that by 5:15 p.m., the River Fire had consumed 500 acres and had jumped a property line placing multiple homes under threat. 45 minutes later, the fire doubled in size and fire crews had the blaze 0% contained. According to The Sacramento Bee, more than 500 fire crew members were deployed to handle the growing fire.
Several Colfax, CA Residents Chose to Ride Out the Fire At Home
Interestingly, despite the intensity of the flames, some residents chose to stay and protect their homes. One man, Derek Chance, spent the night in his home, taking care of protective measures and riding out the fire.
Further, he said he predicted the arrival of such a devasting fire, he just didn’t know when it would occur.
“We had things packed up for a year and a half,” Chance told The Sacramento Bee. The article further said that while the fire didn’t come too close to Chance’s house, the rapid spread of the fire and how quickly it jumped the road was “startling.”
At the time of writing, there are no reports sharing any news concerning the containment of the California River Fire.