[ UPDATE 6:38 a.m.] Fire Along Hwy 101 South of Willits
As of 3:45 p.m., more equipment is being requested from Laytonville.
UPDATE 4:50 p.m.: Scanner traffic indicates that crews are firing around a home near Heart Arrow Trail to protect it. They have two residents with the crews.
UPDATE 5:03 p.m.: Traffic is moving in both directions on Hwy 101 according to the Mendocino Voice that has live video from the scene:
UPDATE 5:16 p.m.: The crews are fighting a spot fire on the south flank near some structures. “We just got beat up,” reports one of the crews trying to fight back the fire.
UPDATE 5:24 p.m.: Crews are trying to protect Redwood Valley. They are trying to get dozers to stop the flames.
UPDATE 5:45 p.m.: Cal Fire is reporting that the Grade Fire is 100 acres and 5% contained. The Bakers Creek Subdivision is being evacuated.
UPDATE 6:09 p.m.: A firefighter with “stabbing” chest pains is being brought down to an ambulance code 3–emergency.
UPDATE 6:13 p.m.: According to the scanner, the fire is now estimated to be 250 acres.
UPDATE 6:47 p.m.: Evacuations warnings are being issued for everything west of West and Tomki Road to 101. This is just a warning but please prepare to leave. Here are some suggestions from Cal Fire:
UPDATE 7:10 p.m.: Four more helicopters have been requested, according to scanner traffic.
UPDATE 7:13 p.m.: Cal Fire tweeted about 7:10 p.m. that the fire is now “300 acres and 5% contained.”
UPDATE 7:20 p.m.: Cal Fire’s Mendocino unit tweeted, “
#MEUGradeFire firefighters are battling a 400 acre fire near the community of Redwood Valley on the Ridgewood grade…evacuations in progress”
UPDATE 7:30 p.m.: This Flight radar site shows where the flight path of Tanker 133 dropping retardant on the fire. This screengrab of the site helps visualize where the fire is:
UPDATE 7:40 p.m.: About 7:35 Cal Fire tweeted, “#GradeFire [update] northwest of Redwood Valley (Mendocino Co) is now 350 acres and 10% contained. Evacs in place.”
The incident update page states, “Evacuations are in place for Baker Creek Subdivision. Evacuation advisory for above the Valley floor.”
UPDATE 8:09 p.m.: As the light dims, the aircraft is going to have to return to base. Fire command is going to bring in VLAT (912) to hit the head of the fire to close out the day. They might also bring in other tankers.
UPDATE 8:28 p.m.: For those evacuating with animals, the Redwood Empire Fairgrounds is available. Call 272-2299 or 463-4086 for more information.
Those evacuating needing help can call the American Red Cross at 1-866-272-2237.
UPDATE 8:36 p.m.: Information from the Mendocino County Office of Emergency Services:
The #GradeFire is currently burning along Highway 101 about 5 miles northwest of Redwood Valley. Based on the current Calfire estimates the fire is roughly 800 acres. Evacuations are currently in place for the Baker Creek Subdivision, and advisory evacuations have been issued for the area west of Westside Road to Highway 101- not including the valley floor.
Evacuations notifications will be submitted via the County’s Citizen Alert and Notification system. Residents can sign-up athttps://member.everbridge.net/index/892807736722865#/signup
UPDATE 8:48 p.m.: According to a commander on the fire, “It appears that the forward progress hasn’t stopped.” He estimates that the fire is 650 to 700 acres.
UPDATE 8:50 p.m.: Mendocino Cal Fire just tweeted, “# Update: 1000 acres 10 % contained.”
UPDATE 9:26 p.m.: Medocino Cal Fire updated. They tweeted, “# [correction] NW of Redwood Valley (Mendocino County) is now 900 acres & 10% contained. Reduced acreage due to better mapping.”
UPDATE 9:35 p.m.:
— Mendocino Sheriff (@MendoSheriff) July 17, 2017
UPDATE: Monday’s post on the fire is here: The Grade Fire: What’s Happening With the Blaze Burning South of Willits?