PLACER COUNTY (CBS SF) — A wildfire that broke out near the border between Nevada and Placer counties Wednesday quickly grew to 1,400 acres, forcing evacuations in the town of Colfax and other areas according to authorities.
As of Wednesday night, officials said 35-40 structures have been destroyed. About 4,000 structures were threatened, with half of those in the Colfax area.READ MORE: Families Anxiously Await COVID Vaccinations For Toddlers
The fire — identified as the River Fire by Cal Fire — started just after 2 p.m. off Milk Ranch Road and Bear River Campground Road just north of Applegate.
Shortly before 5 p.m., the fire was estimated at 500 acres. 40 minutes later, it’s size had doubled to 1,000 acres.
As of shortly before 7:30 p.m., the fire had grown to 1,400 acres, Cal Fire officials said.
#RiverFire off Milk Ranch Road and Bear River Campground Road, north of Applegate in Placer and Nevada County is 1400 acres. @CALFIRENEUhttps://t.co/E9T9fQAX96
Evacuation Information: https://t.co/c5ILkhArqT pic.twitter.com/A9912VxBaR
— CAL FIRE (@CAL_FIRE) August 5, 2021
It is currently zero percent contained.
- Cal Fire: River Fire Incident Page | Cal OES Evacuation Info | Nevada County Evacuation Map | Placer County Evacuation Map
At around 5 p.m., the Nevada County Sheriff’s Office ordered evacuations.
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This is the Nevada County Sheriff's Office issuing an Evacuation ORDER for a Wildfire affecting zone NCO-E180. All residents are to EVACUATE IMMEDIATELY. Check https://t.co/x0UEl15gmO for updates pic.twitter.com/C5Jqqc3dpJ
— Nevada County OES (@NevCoOES) August 5, 2021
Road closures in connection with the River Fire include State Route 174 at Lower Colfax Road and Bear River Bridge as well as the I-80 eastbound and westbound on- and off-ramps at the State Route 174 separation and Canyon Way/Placer Hills Road.
Earlier Wednesday at around 4:19 p.m., the Placer County Sheriff ordered evacuations in Colfax.
Those who have evacuated can go to a shelter set up at the Auburn Veterans Memorial Hall at 100 East Street in Auburn. That shelter is accepting pets. There is a second shelter established at the Gold Country Fairgrounds & Event Center at 209 Fairgate Road, also in Auburn that opened at 5 p.m. No pets will be allowed there.
ALERT: #Fire Evacuations in #Colfax
Evacs starting at the Bear River Campground, Milk Ranch Rd to Tokyana Rd; north of Moorhaven Way from the river to Placer Hills Rd; Placer Hills Rd east to the Bear River; Ben Taylor Rd south along Placer Hills Rd to Moorhaven Way. #PCSO pic.twitter.com/901iLyhFS9
— Placer Sheriff (@PlacerSheriff) August 4, 2021
The Cal Fire Nevada Yuba Placer unit tweeted video and said the incident commander has requested support for structure defense due to the immediate threat to homes in the area.
CAL FIRE/ Placer County Fire responding to the vegetation fire in the Bear River campground near Colfax in Placer County. The incident commander has asked for structure defense for immediate threat to homes in the area. A resource request for more air resources and engines pic.twitter.com/b99Dd7MaGN
— CAL FIRE Nevada-Yuba-Placer Unit (@CALFIRENEU) August 4, 2021
The fire is reportedly burning on both sides of the Bear River.
KPIX Sports Director Dennis O’Donnell tweeted video of a plume of smoke from the River Fire near Colfax.
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— Dennis O'Donnell (@DennisKPIX) August 4, 2021
Cal Fire had previously issued a Red Flag Warning for the northeastern part of the state due to gusting winds, high temperatures and low humidity.
#RedFlagWarning in effect for Northeastern California for today through Thursday evening due to gusty winds and low humidity. This is #CriticalFireWeather so use caution outdoors. More tips: https://t.co/upBwccxXFO pic.twitter.com/MXD4pIsEyl
— CAL FIRE (@CAL_FIRE) August 4, 2021