Cal Fire: October wildfires worst series in state history (Photos)
October Fire Siege, worst series of fires in California history.
Northern California >> The wildfires that rampaged through Northern California, starting on the night of October 8, destroyed about 8,400 structures and killed at least 42 people. The fire series, dubbed the October Fire Siege by Cal Fire, is now marked as the deadliest in California history.
As of Monday, October 22, officials reported 5,000 firefighters were still battling 10 fires across the northern part of the state.
Mendocino, Napa, and Sonoma counties saw the worst fires in the Siege, with the Tubbs Fire in Santa Rosa as the most destructive. The blaze dismantled about 5,500 structures, 2,600 more than the Tunnel Fire in October 1991. The Tubbs fire grew to over 36,000 acres and was reported at 94-percent containment on October 23.
Among the 14 fires that erupted by October 9, the area of Clearlake and Clearlake Oaks in Lake County underwent one of its worst nightmares — another fire. The county has continued its recovery efforts from previous fires, including the 2015 Valley Fire which holds as the third largest and most destructive fire in the state's history. This time, locals evacuated their homes during predawn hours as the Sulphur Fire grew to 2,500 acres. The Lake County Sheriff's Department reported 166 structures damaged and no deaths reported. On top of that, the community of Middletown, which became the home for Sulphur Fire evacuees, underwent threats from the Tubbs Fire, while Cobb stayed alert as the Pocket Fire seemed to head their way.
By combining fires from Southern California at the time, Cal Fire responded to 250 new wildfires. Of that number, 21 were major, with 11,000 firefighters combating the fires that burned 245,000 acres and caused 100,000 people to evacuate at one time.
Pictured below is what remained of the Fountaingrove area, located in the northernmost part of Santa Rosa. The Tubbs Fire destroyed 1,800 structures there.