[UPDATE 1:50 p.m.: New Evacuations] Tulley Fire North of Weitchpec: Evacuations, Road Closures, and Power Outages
The Tulley Fire north of Weitchpec which exploded at 4 p.m. yesterday devoured 300 acres, at least two structures, forced evacuations and closed Hwy 169. Yet, it is still so new that government and news agencies are struggling how to spell it’s name–Tulley, Tully, Tule are all versions we’ve seen. The Yurok Tribe, however, spells the creek near the flames as Tulley.
Even calling it a single fire is confusing. There are actually three fires. One large one and two smaller ones. We’ll be looking to get a map up soon.
The flames spread out quickly from the three starting areas. A commenter wrote yesterday that he watched the fires spring up. “First set is maybe a quarter mile down river from Martin’s Ferry Bridge,” he wrote. He says he noticed it right before 4:00 p.m. That fire “jumped the road around 4:15 p.m.,” according to Rossi. He also saw a “second fire further down river. Maybe 3 miles. It appears to be the larger of the two.”
Hwy 169 was closed between Martin’s Ferry Bridge and Cappell Creek, according to Cal Fire last night. We’ll update as soon as possible this morning.
Multiple power poles were reported burning before six p.m. Power went out to the area and an approximate thirty-two customers are in the dark this morning. PG&E cannot access the damaged equipment because of the fire.
Cal Fire reports, “There is an evacuation warning in place for Gibbens Road, Jack Ranch Road, and Peters Lane. Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office has advised evacuees to go to the Red Cross shelter at the Hoopa Neighborhood Facility located at 11900 Hwy 96 in Hoopa.
The weatherperson predicts that the area today will be sunny and 85 to 90 degrees with humidity ranging from 20 to 30%. Northeast winds will be blowing at five to six miles per hour and shifting to the west this afternoon.
We’ll be updating below as information on the #TulleyFire comes in today.
UPDATE 8: 10 a.m.: Cal Fire reports that the fire is still 0% contained and 300 acres as of 7:30 a.m. “The fire is burning in steep, rugged terrain in heavy timber and slash,” Cal Fire writes.
UPDATE 9:45 a.m.: Press release from Cal Fire:
The Tully fire is 300 acres. The fire burned actively most of the night and crews aggressively attacked spot fires on the south side of the fire. Branch I is the main fire and is zero percent contained. Branch two consists of two smaller fires south of the main fire totaling 40 acres and is 50 percent contained.
There is a hard closure of Hwy 169 between Martin’s Ferry Bridge and McKinnon Hill Road (Martin’s Ferry Bridge is open).
There is an evacuation order for Gibbens Road, Peters Lane, Jack Ranch Lane, and McKinnen Hill Road. There is an evacuation warning in place for Lower Cappell Road.
The evacuation center is the Hoopa Neighborhood Facility at 11900 Hwy 96 in Hoopa. Information regarding the evacuation center can be directed to Cris Jones-Koczera of the Red Cross at 707-470-9932 or Serene Hayden of Hoopa OES at 530-739-2259.
Cooperating agencies include HIA, USFS, HIA, HSO, CDCR, Humboldt County OES,
UPDATE 1:50 p.m.: Cal Fire tweeted, “The #TulleyFire is now at 440 acres. Two of the three fires are contained. Largest fire is into the Cappel Creek drainage. 0% contained.”
Earlier Chapter: Multiple Vegetation Fires Burning North of Weitchpec (Includes photos and videos)