Gov. Brown declares wildfire emergency


Gov. Jerry Brown Friday declared a state of emergency in California to mobilize additional resources in the fight against a series of wildfires including the Wragg Fire in Napa and Solano counties.

The proclamation today noted that fires burning in more than a dozen counties across the state have damaged thousands of acres and strained state and local resources.

Brown said in a statement:

“California’s severe drought and extreme weather have turned much of the state into a tinderbox. … Our courageous firefighters are on the front line and we’ll do everything we can to help them.”

Brown previously declared a state of emergency in January due to the drought that the state has experienced for the past four years, which has increased the risk of wildfire.

Today’s proclamation calls on state agencies to assist in firefighting efforts and mobilizes the California National Guard to support disaster response and relief efforts. The National Guard today activated two air tankers to assist Cal Fire, and on Thursday mobilized nine helicopters.

The proclamation notes that the state has already requested federal Fire Management Assistance grants to assist with the Wragg Fire in Napa, Solano and Yolo counties and with the North Fire in San Bernardino County.

The Wragg Fire, first reported around 2:30 p.m. on July 22 in the area of state Highway 128 at Wragg Canyon Road, has burned just over 8,000 acres and is 92 percent contained, Cal Fire officials reported shortly before 6 p.m. today.

Fire officials currently estimate it could be contained by Aug. 3. The fire has destroyed two outbuildings and damaged three outbuildings and one home. It continues to threaten 136 other structures, fire officials said.

No injuries have been reported and all evacuations have been lifted.

Other nearby fires of note include the Rocky Fire, which has burned 18,000 acres in Lake County and multiple lightning fires in Mendocino County, which have burned around 50 acres.

Statewide, Cal Fire officials said lightning storms and gusty winds in Northern California have sparked new fires today, and as of this evening more than 8,000 firefighters are fighting 23 large fires.

A Red Flag Warning advisory for high fire danger has been issued for the northern part of the state by the National Weather Service due to dry thunderstorms and winds.

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