SEIAD VALLEY, Calif. — Approximately 300 people in Seiad Valley were given notice to leave their homes as a fire inches into backyards. Some of those people have taken the warning to heart, others stood firm, refusing to leave all they know.
The Goff Fire in Northern California is only 16% contained. 600 fire fighters and support crew members are working to save 85 homes which are in the fires path. Fire crews are working in a very steep and rugged terrain and as winds pick up Tuesday evening; that element can add to an already challenging effort.
“The stronger winds can help increase the fire behavior it can increase the spotting potential,” said Oregon Fire Service spokesperson, Michelle Carbonaro.
Smoke billowed from the mountain side, as fire crews trecked through the backyards of homes that in some cases were only feet away from the flames.
“Crews staged at the houses doing structure protection they’ve been adding to the defensible space around the houses and water lines around the houses as well,” said Carbonaro.
19 engines and seven helicopters worked to keep a distinct line between the fire and the homes.
“As it’s backing down it makes the fire fighter easier more manageable for those fire fighters,” said Carbonaro.
Tuesday morning homeowners were given the last warning. Leave your house or stay at your own risk. Officials said about half have decided to stay put until their last possible chance to leave.
“It was pretty scary when it first came over the ridge a couple nights ago,” Chris Van Nuys.
Van Nuys couldn’t bare the thought of leaving the house he is about to own.
“Most of our valuables we packed up and moved to a storage shed,” said Van Nuys. He has stayed behind, watching and waiting.
Law enforcement officials say nearly four miles of Seiad Creek road is closed off. For now, those who have left cannot come back, but are assured their homes and everything inside are in good hands. As fire fighters work to protect the homes from fires, law enforcement officials will be protecting them from looters.
Fire crews will be working over night and law enforcement officials said they will be patrolling that neighborhood 24 hours a day until that evacuation notice is lifted.