As firefighters made a significant progress on Friday, Oct. 25, to contain the Old Water Fire, in San Bernardino, state authorities issued an emergency proclamation for Sonoma and Los Angeles counties “due to the effects of the Kindcade Fire and Tick Fire”, which have destroyed structures, threatened homes, and caused the evacuation of tens of thousands of residents.
According to the San Bernardino County Fire Department, the Old Water Fire, which started early Thursday, Oct. 24, along Highway 18 in San Bernardino, was 55 percent contained as of Friday morning. On Thursday night, authorities announced all evacuation areas were open to residents only with proper IDs.
The situation in Santa Clarita, where firefighters are currently battling the Tick Fire is the complete opposite. As of Friday morning, the fire that started on Thursday around 2:51 p.m., had consumed 4,300 acres, destroyed at least sis homes and forced the evacuation of more than 40,000 residents.
Fed by the Santa Ana strong winds and dry vegetation, the flames jumped the 14 Freeway overnight causing more evacuations, and forcing state authorities to declare an emergency proclamation.
Meanwhile, the Kincade Fire, which started on Wednesday, Oct. 23, around 9:24 p.m., northeast of Geyserville, in Sonoma County, had consumed as of Friday morning 21,900 acres, and was 5 percent contained.
On Thursday night, California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced the state had secured federal Fire Management Assistance Grants to help secure the availability of resources to fight the Kincade and Tick fires. These grants will enable local, state and tribal agencies to recover eligible costs.
Also on Thursday, Gov. Newsom held a public briefing in Los Angeles regarding the ongoing fire threats and the need to hold utilities accountable for the consequences of their decisions to shut off power for large portions of the state.
Gov. Newsom was also monitoring the Sawday Fire, in San Diego County, which started on Friday, Oct. 25, around 10:52 a.m., almost at the same time of the emergency declaration.
Locally, San Bernardino County authorities announced a High Wind Warning on Friday morning, while urging the public to remain vigilant and be ready to evacuate, if necessary.
According to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, one-third of the city of Redlands has been identified within the Very High Fire Hazard Severity Zone, meaning the risk of a major destructive wildland fire is very high.