Firefighters on Wednesday stopped the forward progress of a wildfire that broke out in the Clearlake area of Lake County, Cal Fire said.
The Cache Fire burned about 80 acres and was 20% contained as of 10 p.m., according to Cal Fire.
About 50 homes burned to the ground and 1,600 people evacuated at the height of the fire, about 800 people were put on evacuation standby.
Residents can check their evacuation zone here or in the interactive map below.
There was nothing left in this Cache Creek Mobile Home Park Wednesday night after a wave of flames ripped through it.
There is a history of fires in this area, a history that is a real problem.
“It felt like the movies kind of,” said Nikki Seaver, who is one of the lucky ones.
She has a home to go back to unlike dozens of people who live in the fire zone and is grateful she has a story to tell.
“I grabbed pictures, my file cabinet which was a little binder of file stuff,” she said.
Dozens of families weren’t so lucky.
“The initial attack was to evacuate and save lives and to augment that it was a combination of both,” said Willie Sapeta, Lake County fire chief.
Crews attacked the wildfire from the air and it was controlled chaos getting school buses full of children to safety.
“It got up in the trees. It was burning across the trees from one side of the street to the other, came on quickly,” said Brian Martin, Lake County sheriff.
So quickly that animal rescue crews scrambled to get goats and other animals to safety.
Some animals perished in the fire.
“If an animal is safe where they’re located we’re going to keep them in that area and give them food and water,” said Jonathan Armas, Lake Evacuation Animal Protection.
Water in the mountains is scarce. Everyone has a pump but there’s no water in the creek because of the drought.
James Tindell stayed behind to help save homes in his neighborhood.
“There’s something causing all these fires to keep sparking,” he said.
The cause of the fire is under investigation. The sheriff was firm in saying if anyone intentionally set the fire, they should be held accountable.
An evacuation shelter has been set up at Kelseyville High School.
Further information was not immediately available.