UPDATE: 10:00 pm 9/27/16
CalFire’s evening update reports the Sawmill fire is at 75% containment, with 717 personnel remaining on the scene: “Firefighters continue to mop up and patrol the fire perimeter. Demobilization/or reassignment of resources has begun. Evening temperature forecasted at 62 degrees with an increase in humidity.”
UPDATE: 1:00 pm 9/27/16
Evacuation order and road closures lifted, crews expected to start winding down.
UKIAH — The Sawmill Fire, which started Sunday 10 miles east of Cloverdale on Big Geysers Rd and Geysers Resort Rd, is still at 1500 acres and is 55% contained, a spokeswoman for CalFire said Tuesday morning. Two firefighters have suffered minor injuries, but no civilians have been harmed. Thirty-six structures were evacuated, but all mandatory evacuations and road closures have been lifted at this time. Ten dozers, 15 water tenders, 4 choppers, 84 engines, and 32 fire crews are on the scene, but CalFire expects a reduction in resources as personnel are replaced or reassigned, either to their home units or another fire, possibly a large blaze that recently started in Santa Clara. The spokeswoman said crews were moving toward “positive containment,” but emphasized that none would be released until the work was finished at the site of the Sawmill fire. The estimate for the cost of fighting the fire is not yet available. The cause is under investigation.
The spokeswoman said it had held steady at 1500 acres in a historical fire area where conflagrations can reach 10,000 acres, due to the success of the initial attack, which involved bulldozers, hand crews, air attack and tankers. She described the remote terrain as challenging, and concluded that “every wildland fire is a little different.”
UPDATE: 9:10pm 9/26/16
According to CalFire the fire remains at 1500 acres and is now 45% contained. Crews made good progress with 1033 personell.
WILLITS — The Sawmill fire, which started yesterday 10 miles east of Cloverdale on Big Geysers Road and Geysers Resort Road, has been at 1500 acres with 20% containment all day today, September 26. A spokesperson said that 36 homes were in the mandatory evacuation area. As of 12:30pm, no residents had taken advantage of the evacuation center at Good Shephard Lutheran Church in Healdsburg. Cal Fire reported that this location had changed, but there is some confusion about the exact location of the new center. A spokesman at the Lutheran Church said he believed the church was still on standby, but that the Red Cross, which was on hand last night, was no longer at the church.
Four choppers are on the scene, but the tankers have been released. The base camp is at Konocti, and 463 personnel are battling the blaze, which is consuming dry grass on steep terrain. Temperatures are expected to rise into the 100’s today, with low humidity, which the CalFire spokeswoman characterized as “not ideal weather.”
Cooperating agencies include: CAL PINE, Napa County Fire, Cloverdale FPD, Geyserville FPD, Healdsburg FD, Windsor FPD, Sonoma and Lake County Sheriff’s Office, CA Highway Patrol, Red Cross, CA Dept. of Corrections and Rehabilitation, North Bay Incident Management Team, and Sonoma County Animal Services.
Mendo Voice Staff 26 September 2016