Bulldozers and an army of fire engines from up and down the West Coast, lined up along Highway 29 where it winds up through a forest, north of Calistoga.
“On this portion, the fire behavior is calm and the winds are in our favor,” said Kyle Breaw, who is part of a Calfire hand crew out of Santa Clara, charged with ensuring the flames don’t cross the dozer line and highway.
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“The importance of holding it,” Breaw said, “is so it doesn’t cross over and burn into a new section or burn other homes.”
South in the community of Angwin, firefighters fought back flames for a second time this week, leaving smoldering fires next to days old burn scars.
“What we’ve had here today, what we’ve experienced on several fires this year is an area burns through what we call a dirty burn, where you have a lot of burned areas, but also a lot of unburned areas. The change in the wind and remaining high heat allows for the fire to come back through a second time,” said Acting Vallejo Fire Captain, Kevin Brown.
Brown says a team of fire crews stopped flames, which raced up an overgrown hill Thursday, alongside a winery on Bell Canyon Road.
“We’ve been working down in this drainage for hours. Fire was gaining steam as it made that uphill run towards us.”
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Brown says their crew called for air support, which saved the property along with hours of chainsaw and yard work, including cleaning out the gutters.
“It’s amazing actually,” said Ignacio Gonzalez, who has lived in the house for 20 years.
His family evacuated Sunday and had no idea if the house was still standing, until ABC7 called to let them know that firefighters had saved it.
“Thank you firefighters,” said Gonzalez. “Thank you for all you did.”
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