Some evacuation orders lifted in California fire


Cal Fire reported two minor injuries and no buildings destroyed in the fire, which was driven by gusting winds and made more hard to fight because of the excessive heat felt in the North Bay the past few days.

Cooler temperatures this week and possible showers this weekend are expected to give hundreds of Cal Fire firefighters a much-needed boost in fighting the Loma Fire in the Santa Cruz Mountains, which by early Wednesday has scorched 2,250 acres, or 3.5 square miles.

One remote area where the fire burned is 30 minutes up a winding dirt road. KRON 4 reports on the aerial firefight, and notes that flames were visible along the mountainside yesterday from the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. But by noon, the blaze was only 5 percent contained and one firefighter sustained a minor eye injury and was taken to a hospital for treatment.

"Eight years ago our house burned down in an electrical fire", Renee Merrick said.

Several roads are closed, including Mt. Bache at Loma Prieta Road, Mt. Bache at Highland and Mt. Madonna Road at Pole Line Road. When Anthony Lopez returned to check on his home, which was still under an evacuation order, he was overjoyed to find dozens of his marijuana plants intact Tuesday.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Even as the almost-contained, 128,595-acre Soberanes Fire continues to smolder, sending smoke my friend's way, a new and risky wildfire has ignited not far off.

The fire started in grass near an off ramp of Highway 101 and was blown by the wind into parched eucalyptus trees, Holden told the Press Democrat.

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An evacuation order for a wildfire dubbed the Sawmill fire in Sonoma County, California, has been lifted. He also said that there were four helicopters and six air tankers attacking the fire from the air, Mercury News noted.

The area is dotted with marijuana growing operations, though the number of plants at risk is unclear. It now threatens 300 buildings and has been very hard to deal with.

The area is north of the border between Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties, where a large plume of smoke could be seen for miles.

Meanwhile, local Danielle Mays was forced to wait anxiously for her neighbour to bring her Boston terrier, Layla, and her cat, Callie, to safety.

PG&E crews were sent to Uvas and Croy roads Tuesday afternoon to cut vegetation near power poles and spray the poles with fire retardant to lessen the chance of damage from the blaze, according to PG&E.

She told the newspaper: "That's it; that's what matters".

They were alerted to the fire at 2:45 p.m. and stepped outside to see "the most incredible mushroom of smoke". "I have fire insurance for the rest".

Among the fearless firefighters battling the flames to save homes is Strike Team XAL 2006F, consisting of firefighters from the Alameda County, Piedmont and Fremont Fire Departments.