Highway 255 Closed for Rapidly-Growing Fire Near Samoa
Scanner traffic indicates fire crews are responding to a vegetation fire in the Samoa area near Vance Avenue and Highway 255. A voice over the scanner said the fire “appears to be a wind-driven fire” with a “rapid rate of spread.” The most recent estimate of the size of the fire is about two acres.
Law enforcement has been requested to help with traffic control because people are in the area trying to take photos. According to the scanner, three structures are threatened, and one of the structures was being used by at least one transient. We’ll update when we find out more.
Update 3:00 p.m.: According to the scanner, Highway 255 had been closed.
Update 3:02 p.m.: Helicopters are responding to the incident.
Update 3:03 p.m.: Five water tenders have been requested.
Update 3:10 p.m.: Arcata Fire has sent the the majority of its resources to the fire, which is being called the “Vance Incident,” and it does not have enough engines to cover Arcata at the moment.
Update 3:13 p.m.: According to the scanner, fire crews are making good progress on the fire.
Update 3:23 p.m.: The fire has grown to about five acres.
Update 3:31 p.m.: The fire is not contained at this point, but fire crews are estimating containment within the next hour.
Update 3:39 p.m.: From CHP — Humboldt’s Facebook page:
Update 3:59 p.m.: Tweet from Cal Fire:
— CAL FIRE HUU (@CALFIRE_HUU) July 16, 2015
Update 4:24 p.m.: Reader Kathy Srabian is telling us Highway 255 is still closed. Srabian says, “Helicopter dumping bucket after bucket of bay water on fire.”
Update 4:34 p.m.: Photo from reader Kathy Srabian.
Additionally, Srabian says a woman who is walking from car to car says the fire is not expected to jump the road. Srabian says a Blue Lake tanker just left, and she doesn’t see helicopters flying in the area anymore. Traffic on Samoa Bridge is moving, but traffic in Samoa is “still sitting.”
Update 4:37 p.m.: Srabian said a CHP officer just told her the “road will be closed for an hour or more.”
Update 7:45 p.m.: Don’t forget to check out these photos of the fire on a separate post.