California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) has declared a statewide emergency as a challenge on both ends of the state. The Kincade Fire already burned more than 54,000 acres – roughly the size of Baltimore – as of Sunday night, according to Cal Fire, which said it was just 5 percent contained.
At least two firefighters have suffered injuries since the blaze started late Wednesday night in Geyserville, about 75 miles northwest of San Francisco. Soda Rock Winery near Highway 1
Nearly 3,400 persons are fighting the massive wildfire, and they are contending with a mix of weather conditions.
In the San Francisco Bay area – especially the North Bay, which includes Sonoma County – a relentless 36-hour period of howling, desiccating winds will come to an end on Monday at 11 am local time. "Red flag" warnings are in place until the time for most of the Bay Area, for "critical" fire weather that could allow wildfire to spread rapidly and exhibit extreme behavior.
The air mass over for this time of year and abundant vegetation following a wet winter is extremely dry, which primes the environment for fires.
The Bay Area does not catch much of a break after Monday, however. [TheNationalWeatherServiceisforecastinganotherdayof"stronggustyanddryoffshorewinds"beginningmidday
This looming event would be the third major "Diablo wind" event in seven days, something Weather Service forecasters in the region said they have "no memory" before. These events are more spread out over time. With the next event, winds are expected to be in the North and East Bay hills, where gusts up to 65 mph are possible.
The mass evacuations proved controversial in some of the areas further from the fire. On Sunday, Sonoma County sheriff Mark Essick said he was "100 percent convinced" he ordered the right call in the mandatory Saturday and Sunday evacuation, according to the Press Democrat.
"I can understand why someone in Bodega Bay is saying, 'C'mon. What are you guys doing? 'I do not take that lightly,' Essick said. "I look at October 2017 and I silently get emotional about this because I was there. … We lost 24 lives. "
The 2017 Tubbs Fire in Sonoma, Napa and Lake counties killed 22 people and one of the most destructive blazes in state history, more than 5,000 properties – many of them homes in Santa Rosa – and causing more than $ 1.2 billion in damage.