Kincade Fire 70 percent contained, holds steady at 77,758 acres burned

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Saturday, November 2, 2019
Kincade Fire 68 percent contained, holds steady at 77,758 acres burned
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Many people in Sonoma County are returning home after being evacuated for the Kincade Fire, but the fight to put it out is far from over.

SONOMA COUNTY, Calif. (KGO) -- The Kincade Fire has burned 77,758 acres and is now 70 percent contained. There are 360 structures that have been destroyed, 174 of those are homes. More than 1,600 structures remain threatened.

Sonoma County is opening an assistance center Monday. It will provide information like the permitting process for recovery and rebuilding and applications for food benefits and medical insurance. It's at the Healdsburg Community Center from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Wednesday, but that'll be extended if needed.

Lagunitas Brewing Company is raising money for Kincade fire victims. Over the next month it will offer a rotating selection of beer at its Petaluma taproom. Part of proceeds will go to its "Beer for a Cause" program. On Thursday November 14 they'll hold a fundraiser at the taproom. All proceeds will go to the Petaluma People Services Center and the Human Society of Sonoma County.

MAP: Kincade Fire burn zone, areas under evacuation

Several evacuation orders have been reduced from mandatory evacuations to evacuation warnings. Parts of Zones 1, 3, and 5 are open for residents to return home. Evacuation warnings were also lifted in Zone 21, 31, 32, 33 and 34, according to CAL FIRE.

GO HERE for the exact locations, a live map, and other evacuation details.


As residents return home to areas impacted by the Kincade Fire, many are sharing thoughts about just how different this experience was compared to the Tubbs Fire from two years ago.

Kim Tyner and Robert Ringrose were among the more than 180,000 people evacuated.

Tyner says this experience was much different from two years ago.

"It was less stressful because we knew: 10 a.m. Saturday morning, out by 4 p.m. in the afternoon. And that was well ahead of the fire," explains Tyner.

One reason things were better she says because the fire isn't burning as close as the Tubbs Fire did. But also, due to the notifications they got with specific instructions about what was happening and what to do.

"Our phones were going off like brass drums. I mean, it went off constantly," says Tyner.

Law enforcement also gave people a six hour window to evacuate, which helped with traffic - and anxiety - out on the freeways.

"People were nice. You could only go 30 to 40 miles an hour. But they were all cool. So, it was good, way different than the (Tubbs Fire)," says Ringrose.

Sergeant Juan Valencia with the Sonoma County Sheriff's Department says there were many lessons learned from the Tubbs Fire. For one, alert systems were upgraded. There was also better coordination and communication between local agencies during the Kincade Fire.

"We did have time to somewhat organize, and not create this mass chaos of-- these mass evacuations. And that's what really helped us not have mass casualties in this incident," says Sgt. Valencia.

Sixteen-year-old Conroy Smith says having survived the Tubbs Fire also gave people more confident against the Kincade Fire, and a belief that there town would be safe.

"It seems more organized this time compared to last time when people were really didn't know what to do. They thought, we got to just hope (for the best). This time we came a lot more prepared," says Smith.


At the Sonoma County Fairgrounds night-- kids got to be kids again. Because for the past week, the Kincade Fire has forced them to grow up fast.

Halloween party organizer Jane Engdahl said, "We had kids in the shelter who were afraid Halloween wasn't going to happen because they weren't going to be home. So we told them it didn't matter we were gonna do it here."

The idea for this event was born just two days ago when companies started calling asking if they could donate large amounts of candy to fire victims.

And so for this night-- everyone can forget about the smoke, the fire, the anxiety, and their loss.

Anthony Dadio, 11, said, "I'm thankful for having this Halloween because of the fire we couldn't have it."

They can instead focus on fun.

Earlier Thursday the community came together once again to give the gift of food to those in need.

Several groups came together, including from Redwood Empire Food Bank, to hand out groceries.

Sonoma County resident Antonio Oliva said, "We don't have food. I'm not working because of the fires."

The line outside Finley Community Center in Santa Rosa stretched down the block as evacuees, those still in the dark, and people simply in need-- got some support.

Evacuee Laurissa said, "This is extremely helpful for people who lost wages and need the help the extra help."

Because after all, today is a new day which could bring new beginnings.


Among the thousands of evacuees, many had to rush out of their homes with a few extra family members.

Plenty of the evacuation centers filled up with people and their pets. Some are specifically devoted for large animals.

At the Sonoma County Fairgrounds shelter- hundreds of people have spent the last couple nights sleeping on cots with their dogs, cats, even birds beside them.

For some, this is their first time ever having to spend days in an evacuation center. For others, it's an all-too-recent feeling from the past couple years.

Get the latest developments on the Kincade Fire here.

ABC7 News' Lauren Martinez, Lisa Amin Gulezian, Anser Hassan and the Associated Press contributed to this report.