Roads closed, thousands evacuate as fires destroy structures in Northern California

October 9, 2017

Tyson Fisher


More than 14 wildfires in Northern California have caused more than 20,000 residents to evacuate and destroyed 1,500 homes and businesses as of 11:30 a.m. local time on Monday, Oct. 9. Several highways have been closed in the area as emergency crews battle the fires.

At approximately 10 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 8, 50 mph winds contributed to the spread of at least 14 fires in Napa and Sonoma counties, Ken Pimlott, director of California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. As of publication time, those fires have burned more than 50,000 acres.

According to the California Highway Patrol, the following road closures are in place because of fires:

  • US-101 between Steele Lane and Airport Boulevard;
  • CA-128 at Tubbs Lane; and
  • CA-121 between Wooden Valley Road and Vichy Avenue

Caltrans hopes to reopen the roadways by midnight Oct. 10.

On Monday, Gov. Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency in Napa, Sonoma and Yuba counties as fires threaten critical infrastructure and thousands of homes.

Approximately 50,000 residents are without power as thousands of evacuations have been ordered, according to Pimlott. Most of the fires in the area have little to no containments since efforts are being focused on evacuations and other public safety measures.

The National Weather Service has issued a Red Flag Warning for most of Northern California. The warning spans from 11 a.m. Sunday to 5 a.m. Tuesday from North-East Bay to Santa Cruz Mountains. Northeast winds of 10-25 mph with gusts of 30-55 mph combined with 10 percent to 20 percent humidity have created conditions ripe for fires.