Monday, October 5, 2020

August Complex Surpasses 1 Million Acres, Burning 3 Miles from Humboldt

Posted By on Mon, Oct 5, 2020 at 11:31 AM

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August Complex: 1,002,097 acres and 54 percent containment

Evacuation warnings for portions of Southern Humboldt remain in effect as firefighters continue to their efforts on the August Complex, which is burning approximately 3 miles east of the county line.

The evacuation warnings cover the following communities:

· Zone HA: Areas east of Bell Springs Road to the Trinity County line and south of Pipe Creek to the Mendocino County line. 

· Zone HB: South of Fort Seward Road/Stewart Ranch Road, east of the Eel River at Powers Creek to the Trinity County line, and north of the Eel River at Pipe Creek.

· Zone HG: South of Hayfield Creek, east of the Eel River to the Trinity County Line, north of Stewart Ranch Road.

· Zone HH: South of Stapp Road, east of Baker Creek/Little Van Duzen River to the Trinity County Line, north of Bear Creek.

· Zone HI: South of Olsen Creek, west of Baker Creek/Little Van Duzen River, east of Alderpoint Road/Kneeland Road, north of Hayfield Creek.

See these zones on a map: humboldtgov.org/evacmap.

State Route 36 remains closed due to fire activity, hazardous trees and at the Trinity County line east to State Route 3.

Crews are continuing to enhance existing containment lines and build new fire line. 

In the Northwest Zone, several spot fires were extinguished yesterday near State Route 36 and South Fork Ridge, according to today’s update. Fire managers are using information gathered from infrared sensors on aircraft to find and put out others.

Around the southeast side of Ruth Lake, spot fires are still being extinguished and mop up is continuing as crews use previous fire scars to help slow the spread from Black Lassic toward the west side of the Ruth Lake. 

In preparation of night fire operations, dozer contingency lines are being improved in the Zenia area.

Read the Humboldt County Office of Emergency Services below.



Evacuation warnings remain in effect for southern Humboldt County as fire crews work to contain the August Complex fire, approximately 3 miles east of the county line.

CURRENT SITUATION

This synopsis is a combination of U.S. Forest Service and CAL FIRE Incident Updates for Oct. 5, 2020.

CAL FIRE’s unified team and the U.S. Forest Service are engaged in a coordinated and collaborative response to take suppressive action on the August Complex, which has been reconfigured into four zones (Northeast, Northwest, West, South) to effectively provide a response for the communities at risk. Due to resource draw down throughout the state, CAL FIRE’s Incident Management Team requested the California National Guard to assist with fire suppression efforts and as a result of CAL FIRE’s request, 138 National Guard personnel are assigned to the incident.

With the reconfiguration, today the August Complex North Zone began operations as two separate geographic areas. The dividing line between the Northeast Zone and the Northwest Zone is along South Fork Mountain through Pickett Peak to State Route 36, crossing SR 36 between mile post 55 and 56, continuing north following the South Fork Trinity River. Two zones will provide more supervisory personnel, increased oversight and improved the effectiveness of fire resources. Crews who have been working in the Ruth Valley will be the same to preserve that continuity.

Northwest Zone - Personnel were reallocated from the South Zone to areas near Ruth Lake and the northwest area of the fire. Below South Fork Mountain, the fire has been slowly backing down towards containment lines to the northwest. Where crews cannot directly fight the fire due to terrain or safety concerns, they are using indirect techniques such as anchoring to road systems and using dozer lines for containment well ahead of where the fire is currently burning. Near Zenia the fire crossed existing dozer lines, but progress is being made to contain the fire’s growth with hose lays and crews.

CURRENT HUMBOLDT COUNTY EVACUATION INFORMATION

An EVACUATION WARNING remains for the following communities:

  • Zone HA: Areas east of Bell Springs Road to the Trinity County line and south of Pipe Creek to the Mendocino County line.
  • Zone HB: South of Fort Seward Road/Stewart Ranch Road, east of the Eel River at Powers Creek to the Trinity County line, and north of the Eel River at Pipe Creek.
  • Zone HG: South of Hayfield Creek, east of the Eel River to the Trinity County Line, north of Stewart Ranch Road.
  • Zone HH: South of Stapp Road, east of Baker Creek/Little Van Duzen River to the Trinity County Line, north of Bear Creek.
  • Zone HI: South of Olsen Creek, west of Baker Creek/Little Van Duzen River, east of Alderpoint Road/Kneeland Road, north of Hayfield Creek.

See these zones on a map: humboldtgov.org/evacmap

RESOURCES FOR THE COMMUNITY

If you are a regional wildfire evacuee in need of resources, please contact the following:

  • SHELTERING SERVICES | American Red Cross: 530-276-8034
  • ANIMAL SHELTERING | 707-599-1734

The Humboldt County Office of Emergency Services is not currently accepting donations. Please do not drop off donations at the Humboldt County Fairgrounds.

To volunteer or donate to assist regional wildfire evacuees, please contact:

Pay it Forward Humboldt

Humboldt Area Foundation

American Red Cross

Humboldt CERT

CALIFORNIA STANDARD STATEWIDE EVACUATION TERMINOLOGY

  • Evacuation Order: Immediate threat to life. This is a lawful order to leave now. The area is lawfully closed to public access.
  • Evacuation Warning: Potential threat to life and/or property. Those who require additional time to evacuate, and those with pets and livestock should leave now.
  • Shelter in Place: Go indoors. Shut and lock doors and windows. Prepare to self-sustain until further notice and/or contacted by emergency personnel for additional direction.
  • Evacuation Order(s) Lifted: The formal announcement of lifting evacuations in an area currently under evacuation.
  • Hard Closure: Closed to all traffic except Fire and Law Enforcement.
  • Soft Closure: Closed to all traffic except Fire, Law Enforcement and critical Incident resources (i.e. Utility, Caltrans, City/County Roads etc. or those needed to repair or restore infrastructure).
  • Resident Only Closure: Soft closure with the additional allowance of residents and local government agencies assisting with response and recovery.

HELPFUL INFORMATION

County residents are encouraged to sign up for Humboldt Alert at humboldtgov.org/alerts.

  • August Complex West Zone Fire Information Line (Cal Fire): 707-355-4926
  • August Complex North Zone Fire Information Line (USFS): 530-628-0039
  • August Complex South Zone Fire Information Line (USFS): 530-487-4602
  • Red Salmon Complex Fire Information (USFS): 530-316-1042

Air Quality Monitoring: North Coast Unified Air Quality Management District

For more information regarding the August Complex’s current impact on Humboldt County and current evacuation areas, please go to humboldtsheriff.org, visit @HumCoOES on Facebook and Twitter, or call 707-268-2500.
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Kimberly Wear

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Kimberly Wear is the assistant editor of the North Coast Journal.

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