This is a developing situation and information may change. We’ll update this article as more information becomes available. The most recent information will be updated at the top of the article, with the earlier reports below.
7/26/23 7:34 p.m. — The air crews that were helping to fight the fire have been released back to their bases and ground crews remain on the scene to mop-up the fire.
According to the United States Forest Service, mopping-up is “the hard physical labor process of extinguishing or removing burning material near control lines down to the mineral soil, felling fire damaged trees, and cooling ash pits to make a fireline less likely to escape or to reduce residual smoke.” Crews will take time to mop-up to minimize the likelihood of the fire burning outside control lines.
WILLITS, 7/26/23 — Fire crews are responding to a wildland fire northeast of Willits in the 30000 block of North Highway 101. According to scanner traffic, the fire was reported at approximately 6:53 p.m. and is an estimated 3 acres.
The fire has been called the “Ryan” incident and plumes of smoke were visible from the Laughlin Ridge fire cameras. Both CAL FIRE and Mendocino County crews are responding to the fire, including air support comprising an airplane and helicopter.
According to scanner traffic, no structures are threatened and the fire is burning in dry grass at a slow to medium rate. As of 7:14 p.m., forward progress has been stopped in part to retardant dropped by air response. Crews remain above the fire and on the ground as they work to contain the fire.
The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office is asking residents to use caution and avoid the area. Here is the Nixle alert:
Situational Awareness: Wildfire in the WILLITS area, near N HWY 101/RYAN CREEK RD, No further action needed at this time, Use caution and avoid the area. We will publish updates to mendoready.org as more information becomes available.
Sarah Stierch covers wildfires, breaking news, and more for The Mendocino Voice. You can follow Stierch on Twitter and learn more about her work and donate to her directly at here. Contact Stierch at [email protected]. The Voice maintains editorial control and independence.