Saturday, September 23, 2023

[UPDATE: Forward Progress Stopped]Bank Fire Near Covelo Threatens Structures

The Bank Fire as seen from the Big John Alert Wildfire Camera

A fire is burning in the Covelo area near the intersection of Hwy 162 and Fairbanks Lane, according to reports over the scanner about 4:30 p.m.

The fire is now reported to be 10 acres and the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Department is requesting their night shift respond in order to assist with the Bank Fire.

The Incident Commander who said he was looking at the incident. “Got a pretty good wind on it…A couple of structures that are possibly threatened.”

He asked that a warning be sent out to residents in about 1/2 mile radius

“There are structures at the very head of the fire,” the Incident Commander said.

The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office have issued a situational awareness warning:

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Update 5 p.m.: The Incident Commander requested multiple additional resources. Flight Radar shows two tankers and a smaller plane responding to the scene.

UPDATE 5:37 p.m.: An update from the CAL FIRE Mendocino Unit Twitter page indicate the fire is between 10 and 15 acres burning at a moderate rate of spread.

CAL FIRE published this photo from above the incident:

[Photograph from CAL FIRE]

A firefighter on the scene reported the fire was threatening to push through a dozer line and continue into dry fields beyond.

This video shows the rapid flare-up of the fire in the afternoon heat:

UPDATE 6:14 p.m.: The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office has issued evacuation warnings as a result of the Bank Fire:

This photograph depicts a greenhouse that burned today in Covelo as the Bank Fire spread:

[Photograph provided by a Covelo resident]

UPDATE 6:21 p.m.: The Incident Commander reported the Bank Fire’s forward progress has been stopped and containment is imminent. The mop-up is expected to last 4-5 hours.

UPDATE 6:53 p.m.: The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office has downgraded the evacuation warning to a situational awareness notification:

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UPDATE 7:50 p.m.: CAL FIRE Mendocino announced on their social media that the Bank Fire’s acreage was around 107 acres, making today’s fire the biggest Mendocino County wildfire in 2022 thus far.

Please remember that this story is unfolding. Information is being reported as we gather it. However, some of the information coming from witnesses and initial official reports could be wrong. We will do our best to get the facts but, in the case that something is inaccurate, we will update with correct information as soon as we can.

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Matt LaFever
Matt LaFeverhttps://mendofever.com/
I like to think of myself as a reporter for the Average Joe. Journalism has become a craft defined largely by city dwellers on America's coasts. It’s time to take it back. I have been an Emerald Triangle resident since 2006 and this is year ten in Mendocino County. Please, email me at matthewplafever@gmail.com if you know a story that needs to be told.

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