Some evacuees allowed to return home near Wragg Fire

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ByAlan Wang KGO logo
Thursday, July 23, 2015
Golden Bear Estates evacuees allowed to return home
Those who had to leave their homes in the Golden Bear Estates due to the fire burning near Lake Berryessa were allowed to return home.

YOLO COUNTY, Calif. (KGO) -- The out-of-control fire burning in Napa County, near Lake Berryessa, has spread into Yolo and Solano counties. It's burned nearly 7,000 acres and is just 15 percent contained.

Mandatory evacuations are still in place, but some have been lifted. Thursday night, residents in the Quail Canyon area are being told not to drink their water because it may be contaminated.

So far, firefighters have only had one outbuilding destroyed and one home damaged. Not bad for a fire that has swept nearly 7,000 acres.

PHOTOS: Large fire burns south of Lake Berryessa

Thursday, air tankers and helicopters hammered away at the wildfire on day two. There were also about 250 evacuees waiting to return home, including Christopher Mariani and his pregnant wife.

Mariani said, "I swore we were going to go into labor last night, for sure."

He says they were being evacuated last night, and his wife is two days overdue.

"I'm trying to keep my wife calm, trying to get as many valuables together as we can. I got the sheriff knocking on our door, got the flames coming," Mariani explained.

Thursday night Cal Fire allowed about 50 residents of Golden Bear Estates to return home. However, Mariani, his wife, and about 200 others will have to wait.

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Cal Fire Capt. Amy Head said, "I know there were power outages in the area. So we need to completely mitigate any hazards possible to the public before we can let them in."

Solano Irrigation District also issued a warning. The water in Quail Canyon could be contaminated. Huge amounts of fire retardant, made with fertilizer and dye, may have seeped into the ground water supply. It was pumped into the community's 80,000-gallon tank, which is now being decontaminated.

Kristine DeGuerre lives in the area. When we asked her what she know about the safety of her house, she said, "Well I don't, but it sounds like they are taking care of the Pleasants Valley Road."

Despite the inconveniences, many evacuees are remaining calm and putting their trust in the authorities.

READ MORE: Wildfire near Lake Berryessa burns 6,900 acres

READ MORE: Neighbor opens doors for evacuated horses during Wragg Fire