WILLOW CREEK, Calif-- The Red Salmon Complex which started back on July 27 because of a lightning strike, has been burning for over two and a half months, and has burned more than 141,000 acres and is now over 60 percent contained.
Fire crews over the last few weeks have been able to make great progress in containment measures, increasing containment levels by over 20 percent since the week of October 4, 2020.
According to the public information officer, Nicholas Mickel, with the heavy smoke moving away from valley areas, aircraft attacks have become more frequent and have helped fire crews. He says that air attacks have only had to stop around the later afternoon, when the smoke makes its way back into the valleys.
With progress being made on the fire, on October 14, the Northwest Team 10 completed its tour of the Red Salmon Complex and was relieved by Cal Fire Team 12.
However, even with everything going in the right direction, a new ”Red Flag Warning” has been issued and is go into effect on Wednesday at 11pm for Thursday and Friday.
Fire crews say that this means weather conditions will continue to get warmer, drier and windier with the winds
coming out of the Northeast. The last few times wind conditions have picked up in the area, the complex has grown and has broken containment lines.
"There's always a concern," said Mickel. "We are staffing up the night shift because the wind event is occurring during the evening and that's what's happened with this fire in many cases. We get these wind events that start in the afternoon and then it goes on throughout the night. This fire has a tendency to get up and run during the night."
If crews are able to contain the fire this time around, and containment levels continue to increase, Mickel says that there is a good chance that the fire will be fully contained by Mid-November, but the area is also going to need a little help from the weather.
"Hopefully we will get some rain at the end of October and November that will really dampen things down," said Mickel.