Kincade Fire Evacuations Remain In Effect, Crews Brace For More Unpredictable Weather

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An air tanker drops fire retardant in the valley below during the firefighting operations to battle the Kincade Fire in Healdsburg, California on October 26, 2019. - US officials on October 26 ordered about 50,000 people to evacuate parts of the San Francisco Bay area in California as hot dry winds are forecast to fan raging wildfires.  (Photo by Philip Pacheco / AFP)

Updated Sunday, Oct. 27, 6:30 p.m.

All evacuation orders for the Kincade Fire remain in place Sunday evening. Authorities said conditions remained unpredictable and containment of the fire decreased from earlier in the day to 5%.

The fire has grown to more than 54,000 acres, and about 180,000 residents have been displaced from their homes.

Gov. Gavin Newsom declared a statewide emergency "due to the effects of unprecedented high-wind events which have resulted in fires and evacuations across the state."

Authorities issued more evacuation orders Sunday as historic winds fueled the fire throughout the day. The National Weather Service said wind gusts topped 90 mph Sunday morning in Healdsburg Hills North.

At the Sunday evening press conference, authorities reported that the high wind event continues to challenge fire crews. Conditions are expected to improve Monday through Tuesday, but dry winds are expected to hit the area from Tuesday night into Wednesday.

Two firefighters sustained burn injuries Sunday — one was transported by ambulance but another had to be airlifted to UC Davis Medical Center.

Sutter Santa Rosa Regional Hospital evacuated about 100 patients Saturday night out of “an abundance of caution”, according to KGO. Kaiser Permanente in Santa Rosa came under a mandatory evacuation order early Sunday, affecting about 100 patients, KGO reported.

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All 24 schools in the Santa Rosa City School District will be closed on Monday due to dangerous weather and fire conditions, power shutoffs and nearby evacuations, school officials said Saturday. Refer to the Sonoma County Office of Education site for a list of school closures.

Santa Rosa was hit hard by a wildfire that destroyed thousands of homes and killed 22 people two years ago.

California fire officials say the current wildfire, dubbed the Kincade Fire, that began Wednesday night has burned at least 40 square miles and is only 11% contained.

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