NORTH FORK — Crews make good progress on the Fork Fire last night, completing dozer line around the entire perimeter, save a few spots that were too steep to access. In those small areas, hand line was dug to tie everything in.
The fire was last estimated at just over 38 acres, and is now 40 percent contained. Though there is line around the entire perimeter, that 40 percent number means that fire officials are confident that portion of the line is secure. Crews continue to strengthen all firelines.
At the morning briefing, fire officials cautioned that there is still a lot of potential with this fire. There are several spot fires outside the line on the northeast portion, and those have been lined are are being monitored. However, with temperatures expected to reach into triple digits again today, the potential for flare-ups is high.
Another danger to firefighters and residents alike is the ever-present hazard of dead trees falling. Everyone was reminded this morning when, just as the briefing was getting started, the sound of a large tree coming down echoed across the command post. Trees have been dropping all night all through the fire area.
PG&E was out early this morning to replace four power poles damaged in the fire. Several hundred residents are without power, and crews hope to have it restored by early afternoon.
Air Attack and two helicopters will be over the fire by 10 a.m.
The Sheriff’s Office plans to allow residents of Cascadel and Douglas Ranger station return home by noon today. They are not giving an exact time, and everyone is asked to please not show up hoping to get in or wait in line until the road opens. There are fire engines and water tenders, PG&E trucks and support vehicles moving all along the roadways, and extra congestion and confusion will only hamper their efforts. We will post immediately when the evacuations are lifted. Road 225 remains closed between Road 274 and Cascadel.
UPDATE: All evacuations were lifted and all roadways reopened at 10 a.m. on Saturday, July 30.