California: Clover Fire southwest of Redding

(UPDATE at 2:39 p.m. PDT, September 12, 2013)

There has not been much change on the Clover fire southwest of Redding, California. The satellite has not detected any large areas of heat for a couple of days, but the reported size, at 7,993 acres Wednesday night, increased by about 900 acres. This may be a result of firefighters burning out vegetation to construct control lines. The Incident Commander claims 50 65 percent containment.

Fire and law enforcement officials have developed a repopulation plan, with expectations of allowing residents back into the area between September 12 and 14.

This will be our last update of the Clover Fire unless there is a major change in the status of the incident.

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(UPDATE at 4:43 PDT, September 11, 2013)

On September 10, 2013 during the late evening hours, the Shasta County Sheriff’s Office located a deceased person inside the Clover Fire perimeter on Coal Pit Road in the community of Igo, California while conducting a welfare check. Next of kin was notified and the person has been identified as Brian Stanley Henry, 56. We send out our sincere condolences to the family of Mr. Henry.

Firefighters continued to work throughout Tuesday night and into Wednesday strengthening controls lines and mopping up hot spots around the fire perimeter. A Damage Inspection Team will continue to assess the properties today in the affected communities. Evacuations are still in effect.

CAL FIRE reports that the fire has burned 7,012 acres, is being fought by 1,346 personnel, and is 40 percent contained. The fire destroyed 30 residences and 50 outbuildings, and damaged an additional 30 residences.

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(UPDATED at 8:02 a.m. PDT, September 10, 2013)

CAL FIRE reports that the Clover fire 6 miles southwest of the outskirts of Redding, California has destroyed 80 structures and damaged an additional 30. It continues to move toward the southwest. In less than 24 hours it has blackened 7,400 acres and has required the evacuation of the Happy Valley, Igo, and Cottonwood areas. The incident commander is calling it 40 percent contained.

A map of the fire is below shows heat detected by a satellite. If the fire is burning in light vegetation in some areas, such as grass, the fire may cool in those areas before the next pass of the satellite, resulting in no large areas of heat being detected at that time. This may account for the gaps shown in the heat map. Or, the firefighters may be burning out vegetation ahead of the fire.

Map of the Clover Fire  3:55 a.m. PDT September 10, 2013

Map of the Clover Fire. The red squares indicate heat detected by a satellite at 3:55 a.m. PDT September 10, 2013. The yellow squares were from 2:14 p.m. September 9. (click to enlarge)

CAL FIRE’s Team 5, a Type 1 Incident Management Team, is scheduled to assume command of the fire at 3 p.m. Tuesday.

Resources assigned to the fire include 1,129 personnel, 107 engines, 36 hand crews, 6 air tankers, and 18 water tenders.

Weather

Overnight the wind slowed considerably and the relative humidity increased, allowing firefighters to make some progress. The forecast for the fire area for Tuesday calls for 101 degrees, a relative humidity of 13 percent, clear skies, and north winds of 6 mph changing to come out of the south after noon at about the same speed.

EVACUATIONS

Residents have been advised to evacuate from the following areas:

  • Clear Creek Road and Cloverdale Road
  • Everything southwest to Gas Point Road and Small Farms and Marsha Way
  • Gas Point Road and Happy Valley Road
  • Small Farms track south to Black Pine Road
  • Cloverdale from Clear Creek to Oak
  • Oak to Palm

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(UPDATED at 5:05 p.m. MDT, September 9, 2013)

Map of Clover Fire

Map of Clover Fire. The red squares represent heat detected by a satellite at 2:14 p.m. PDT, September 9, 2013 (click to enlarge)

The fire placed a large order for additional resources, including over a dozen strike teams of engines (five engines per strike team) and five strike teams of hand crews (two crews per strike team).

You can listen to some of the radio traffic here.

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(Originally published at 4 p.m. PDT, September 9, 2013)

A fire that has only been burning for about three hours has already blackened approximately 1,500 2,200 acres in northern California and is causing evacuations. The Clover Fire was reported at 12:32 p.m. PDT today, Monday, and has spread to about 2 miles south of Igo, 6 miles southwest of the outskirts of Redding, and 10 miles west of Anderson (see the above map).

The fire started south of Clear Creek Road and east of Gas Point Road, but by 3:30 p.m. Monday had crossed Gas Point Road.

Evacuations are occurring in the following areas: Small Farms Rd., Clear Creek Rd., Cloverdale Rd. southwest to Gas Point Rd., Cloverdale Rd. from Clear Creek Rd. to Oak, Oak to Palm, Small Farm Track south to Black Pine Rd.

The two DC-10 Very Large Air Tankers had been ordered for the Morgan Fire east of San Francisco, but shortly after they arrived at that fire they were diverted to this new Clover Fire.

Weather

Strong winds and low relative humidities are challenging firefighters. The weather station at the Redding Airport 11 miles east of the fire Monday afternoon recorded 17 mph north and northwest winds gusting at 27 to 30 mph along with a relative humidity of 7 percent. The temperature at the airport reached 15 degrees. The forecast for the fire area for the next two days is slightly more favorable, calling for temperatures in the mid to high 90s, winds at 3 to 6 mph (north on Tuesday and south on Wednesday), humidities of 14 to 22 percent, virtually no chance of rain, and little if any cloud cover.

 

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About Bill Gabbert

Wildland fire has been a major part of Bill Gabbert’s life for several decades. After growing up in the south, he migrated to southern California where he lived for 20 years, working as a wildland firefighter. Later he took his affinity for firefighting to Indiana and eventually the Black Hills of South Dakota where he was the Fire Management Officer for a group of seven national parks. Today he is the creator and owner of WildfireToday.com and Sagacity Wildfire Services and serves as an expert witness in wildland fire. If you are interested in wildland fire, welcome… grab a cup of coffee and put your feet up. Google+

5 thoughts on “California: Clover Fire southwest of Redding

  1. Change of Command at 3 PM?? I thought we learned on the “Dude Fire” that mid-shift Command changes are dangerous and to be avoided at all costs whenever possible?

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