Santa Rosa firefighters save homes affected by North Bay wildfire

SANTA ROSA, Calif. (KGO) -- Santa Rosa did not need any more fires to spread but that's exactly what happened overnight. But the Nuns Fire is not affecting the Oakmont area, east of the city.

The fire came very close to a home in Oakmont at the top of White Oak Drive Monday night. "My family is so immensely grateful for the work that they did to save this beautiful piece of property," resident Valerie Stamps said.

Santa Rosa firefighters made the stop. It took them several hours but they stood their ground and held the line. They not only saved homes but also brought in a good mental victory for themselves. "It feels good. Yesterday, we were kind of mopping up and not making much of a difference on some of the structures. In this case, we actually were able to make a stop and saved the home and a number of homes up here," Santa Rosa Fire Dept. Capt. Mike Harrison said.

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Oakmont faced the biggest threat overnight, but from what we saw, the entire neighborhood looks good. Firefighters don't want to officially say that yet, though.

"I have not heard of any homes. I cannot confirm that, it would be speculation if I heard there were none," Harrison said.

The neighborhood is still closed to residents, causing a lot of frustration Tuesday morning.

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"I have no updates as to when I can check to see if my home is even there and I am concerned," resident Gail Smith said. "It is frustrating."

Some people couldn't take it and drove in anyway, bypassing the police barricade. Firefighters say they understand that frustration but say they really need everyone's cooperation.

"Staying out of the area is actually the best thing people can do to help us be successful because it allows our firefighters to deploy their lines, deploy their equipment safely and move around the neighborhood quickly," Cal Fire Batt. Chief Jonathan Cox said.

A lot of people have said there are no flames, but firefighters say to think of it like a firefighter. It may be out, but just a little bit of wind and it can flare up again and that's what they're worried about.

Officials are unsure when residents will be allowed back in the neighborhood.

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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