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Saturday A.M. Update: Beckwourth Complex Fires – Emergency Shelter at LCC Closes

Thursday, July 15th, 2021

Overnight mapping of the Beckwourth Complex, current as of 2:00a.m. Click on the map for a larger version.

This is continuing coverage of a breaking news event. This post will be continuously updated as new information becomes available. This supersedes our earlier coverage.

Updated 5:22p.m. Shelter Closes Due to No Occupancy

The Emergency Shelter located at Lassen Community College Gymnasium, 478–200 Highway 139 in Susanville, is now closed due to no occupancy.

If you are in need of emergency assistance, please contact the American Red Cross Recovery Line at 1-855-755-7711 or Susanville Salvation Army at (530) 257-0314.

American Red Cross’s Recovery Team will be located at the Doyle Senior Center, 434-685 Doyle Loop, in Doyle, on Sunday, July 18, 2021, from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm to discuss recovery assistance for evacuees and provide access to emergency supplies.

We thank Lassen County Fairgrounds, Lassen Community College, California Department of Social Services, California Office of Emergency Services, Lassen County Office of Emergency Services, American Red Cross, Project:Camp, Susanville Salvation Army, Southern Baptist Church Disaster Relief, Hope Food Pantry, Lassen County Sheriff’s Office, Susanville Police Department, Susanville Police Explorers, Community Church’s Vacation Bible School, Susanville Supermarket IGA, Safeway, Grocery Outlet, Starbucks, Subway, Panda Express, Round Table, Pizza Factory, Lake 4-H, Merry Morsels, Lassen County’s Health and Social Services’ staff, Cowboy 911, Lassen Humane Society, California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, Environmental Alternatives, Teen Challenge, Lassen Family Services, Crossroads, Diamond Mountain Casino & Hotel, and the multitude of community members for assisting in meeting the needs of the shelter.


Updated July 17th, 8:55a.m. Morning Update from Incident Command

The Sugar Fire has burned 104,754 acres is 70% contained according to the morning update from the Forest Service.

The northern and western flanks, from Bird Hills to Doyle Grade area, over to Meadow View and down the Dixie Mountain Ridge system to Dixie Lookout, continue to be the most active areas of the fire.

During the past few operational periods, crews have established perimeter lines around these areas. Increased winds during the afternoon have been threatening containment lines; however, crews continue to patrol these lines eliminating any residual heat.

Contingency aka back-up lines, have also been created near Ross Canyon from Dixie Valley Road to Ferris Flat Road. This area will only be utilized if the fire cannot be held by the containment lines closer to the fire’s present perimeter.

In the southern area of the fire, containment lines from Maddalena, east to Scott Road, north to Constantia and the community of Doyle are holding. The fire has had little-to-no additional progression. Crews continue patrolling and monitoring around these locations, addressing any areas of concern.

Mandatory evacuation orders remain in place for communities in areas where the fire is more active. Residents are urged to visit the Lassen County and Plumas County Sheriff Department’s Facebook or web pages for more information.

According to the Lassen County Sheriff’s Office, as of this morning there are no changes to the evacuation orders.


Updated 4:15p.m. EVACUATION ORDERS REDUCED FOR SOME AREAS

The Sheriff’s Office is asking the citizens of Milford, Doyle, and Herlong to remain vigilant and watch for changing fire conditions. High winds can cause fire activity to escalate quickly. It is imperative that you remain alert and ready to evacuate quickly.

The Mandatory Evacuation Order remains in place for the dirt portion of Doyle Grade where the pavement ends approximately 3.4 miles south of US 395. There will be a road block at that point and a heavy law enforcement presence will remain in the area.

Evacuation Orders have been reduced to an Evacuation Warning for Doyle Proper west of US 395 from Laura Drive to County Road A25.

Evacuation Warnings remain in effect for the following areas:
East and west of US 395 from Milford Grade south to the Lassen/Sierra County line.

Property Loss Information: The Lassen County Planning Department is now able to provide property owners with information regarding property loss. You can access information by calling (530)251-8269. Thank you for your patience while assessment crews complete their work.


Morning Update – July 16th, 8:47a.m. The Sugar Fire has grown to 104,567 acres and is 68% contained this morning.

Fire crews were able to contain an area of the Sugar fire within the Beckwourth Complex, which escaped containment lines adjacent to Highway 395, west of Doyle, yesterday.

The fire encroached on the highway; however, firefighters were able to use air and ground suppression to engage the fire and prevent it from spreading. The highway was closed temporarily but is now reopened. Crews utilized pre-constructed dozer lines, as well as engines to prevent the fire from threatening the highway, Herlong Junction and surrounding communities.

Firefighters then continued constructing dozer lines through Doyle Grade and Meadow View Road, along with defensive burning operations near Spade Way, as weather conditions permitted.

Today, fire crews are building contingency lines, to act as secondary defenses, near Ross Canyon from Dixie Valley Road to Ferris Flat Road. This area will only be utilized if the fire cannot be held by containment lines closer the fire’s present perimeter.

Mandatory evacuation orders have been issued for communities near areas where the fire is more active.

In the southern area of the fire, containment lines from Maddalena, east to the Scott Road, north to Constantia and the community of Doyle are still holding. The fire has had little-to-no additional
progression and crews will continue patrols around these locations.


Updated 9:32 Evacuation Status Update from the Lassen County Sheriff’s Office

Mandatory Evacuation Orders are in place for Doyle Proper on the west side of US 395 from Laura Drive to County Road A25 and the dirt portion of Doyle Grade where the pavement ends approximately 3.4 miles south of US 395.

Evacuation Warnings remain in effect for the following areas:

  • Doyle east and west of US 395 including the town of Herlong south to the Lassen/Sierra County line except for the area under evacuation order.
  • East of US 395 from Laura Drive south to the Lassen/Sierra County line and from the intersection of A25 north to Milford Grade.

Updated 9:17a.m. Evacuation Shelter Moves from Fairgrounds to Lassen Community College at 11:00a.m.

“Due to the ongoing mandatory evacuation orders for the Beckwourth Complex fire,” explains Lassen County Director, Community Social Services Jenna Aguilera, “the shelter at the Lassen County Fairgrounds will close and re-open at Lassen Community College Gymnasium.”

The college is located at 478–200 Highway 139 in Susanville. Those affected by the fire can also call the Emergency Shelter line at (530) 250-9004.

“It is asked for anyone going to the shelter to bring their medication and medical equipment (walkers, breathing machines, etc.), clothing for multiple days, and important papers such as insurance cards. In addition, the shelter is not providing medical care. Any caretakers must accompany you for the duration of your stay. Please keep in mind weapons, drugs, alcohol and personal bedding are not permitted at the shelter.”

Animals needing shelter can be housed at Lassen Community College. Liability, feed, security, and care of animals housed at the College are the sole responsibility of the animal’s owner. For check-in of animals, please report to the Gymnasium or call the Emergency Shelter Line at (530) 250-9004.


Updated 8:13a.m. Morning Update Overnight mapping of the Beckwourth Complex shows the Dotta Fire at 594 acres and 99% containment, while the Sugar Fire grew to 99,937 acres and is 68% contained. Total acreage of the Beckwourth has grown to 100,531 acres.

According to the Incident Command’s morning briefing firefighters will continue focusing their efforts to contain increased fire behavior in the northern area of the Sugar Fire, on the Beckwourth Complex.

Around 3 p.m. Wednesday, spot fires began to spread across the west side of Frenchman Boulevard. Gusting, 50 mile-per-hour winds and extreme fire behavior, such as fire whirls, caused embers to be carried even further ahead of the fire, to the escarpment.

Additional crews were diverted from less active areas of the fire to assist in containment efforts, while other firefighters are still working in these areas. Dozer lines, which had previously been constructed in this area, are also being utilized to slow the fire’s progression. Firefighters were able to reengage and catch the fire between Evans Drive and Plinco Mine Road. Crews will continue working to connect this area with existing dozer lines near Spade Way.

Due to this increased behavior, mandatory evacuation orders have been issued for communities in these areas. Residents are urged to visit the Lassen County and Plumas County Sheriff Department’s Facebook pages for more information.

In the southern area of the fire, containment lines from Maddalena, east to the Scott Road, north to Constantia and the community of Doyle are still holding. The fire has had little-to-no additional progression and crews will continue patrols around these locations.

Windy conditions are expected to continue throughout the day, with gusts up to 30 miles-per-hour, however, the Sugar fire has been creating its own independent weather patterns as the day progresses.


Thursday, July 15th, 7:15a.m. 

The Beckwourth Complex grew just slightly yesterday, reaching 95,747 acres, 73% of which has been contained by fire lines. The estimated containment date for the fire is July 30th.

Further cooling will occur today with temperatures only slightly above normal. Little change in relative humidity is expected with afternoon minimums in the upper single digits to middle teens in the afternoon followed by poor to moderate overnight recovery. Similar wind is expected with mainly west southwest afternoon gusts nearing 30 mph.

Today fire crews will work to:

  • Continue direct and indirect line construction along the East/North East side of the fire perimeter.
  • Utilize engines to mitigate threats to structures in all impacted communities, and hold fire perimeter.
  • Monitor the Dotta fire using aerial operations.
  • Continue to strategize measures to support personnel who are working in remote locations.
  • Management Evaluation Points continue to be monitored as the fire progresses to the East/North East.

Evacuation information updated as of 8:53p.m. Wednesday

The Mandatory Evacuation Order has been expanded to include Doyle Proper on the west side of US 395 from Laura Drive to County Road A26.

The Mandatory Evacuation Order remains in place for the dirt portion of Doyle Grade where the pavement ends approximately 3.4 miles south of US 395. There will be a road block at that point and a heavy law enforcement presence will remain in the area.

Evacuation Warnings remain in effect for the following areas:

  • Doyle east and west of US 395 including the town of Herlong south to the Lassen/Sierra County line except for the area under order.
  • East of US 395 from Laura Drive south to the Lassen/Sierra County line and from the intersection of A26 north to Milford Grade.

Safety Message: People need to leave immediately. Drive with your headlights on and yield to emergency personnel. If you need assistance evacuating, call the non-emergency dispatch center at (530)257-6121. For shelter information, call the emergency shelter line at (530)588-8627.

The Lassen County Sheriff’s Office is asking the citizens of Milford, Doyle, and Herlong to remain vigilant and watch for changing fire conditions. Spot fires along the ridgeline coupled with high winds can cause fire activity to escalate quickly, especially in those areas. It is imperative that you remain alert and ready to evacuate if that occurs.


Shelter Information for Evacuees

Due to the ongoing mandatory evacuation orders for the Beckwourth Complex fire, a shelter is now open at Jensen Hall at the Lassen County Fairgrounds in Susanville. Those affected by the fire can also call the Emergency Shelter line at (530) 250-9004.

It is asked for anyone going to the shelter to bring their medication and medical equipment (walkers, breathing machines, etc.), clothing for multiple days, and important papers such as insurance cards. In addition, the shelter is not providing medical care. Any caretakers must accompany you for the duration of your stay.

Please keep in mind weapons, drugs, alcohol and personal bedding are not permitted at the shelter.

Animals

Animals needing shelter can be housed at the Lassen County Fairgrounds. Liability, feed, security, and care of animals housed at the Fairgrounds are the sole responsibility of the animal’s owner. A check-in form will be available at the barns, please provide to the Fair Office during normal business hours.

Please use the Paul Bunyan entrance to the Fairgrounds for sheltering animals in the barns. If you have any questions about animal sheltering, please contact Fair Manager, Kaitlyn Downing at (530) 588-8627.

This is continuing coverage of a breaking news story. This post will be updated as new information becomes available.

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