Friday, September 7: Delta Fire grows to 31,325 acres, remains zero percent contained
Update as of 9:15 p.m.:
According to the U.S. Forest Service, the Delta Fire has grown to 31,325 acres and is 0 percent contained.
Update as of 3:45 p.m.:
According to the California Highway Patrol, Caltrans, and the U.S. Forest Service, I-5, between Mott Road and Fawndale Road, will remain closed through Sunday morning due to the active presence of fire on the freeway.
At this time, there is no projected date for the freeway to reopen.
Officials said I-5 is being closed to preserve life, property, and the safety of all motorists as the Delta Fire continues to burn along both sides of the interstate with increased activity during the night.
Update as of 2:20 p.m.:
Officials from several different agencies provided updates on the Delta Fire to the media Friday afternoon.
According to Rick Young, Incident Commander for California Team 5, there is a special emphasis on the south side and the north end of the fire as it moves along the I-5 corridor.
Young added, "I do want to make it very clear, this is a full suppression strategy, we are being as aggressive as we possibly can given the fuel conditions and the weather that's been handed to us."
Shasta County Sheriff Tom Bosenko then reviewed the evacuations currently in place in Shasta County which includes from Vollmers to Sims Road.
Boskeno added anything north of Sims Road is not evacuated at this time.
The fire is currently about 11 miles from Castella and about 15 miles from Dunsmuir.
Currently, Dunsmuir is under an evacuation warning, which was issued by Siskiyou County Sheriff Jon Lopey Wednesday evening.
"It's imperative that folks be ready to evacuate in these areas. They should have their clothing, medications, cell phone, cell phone chargers all ready to go," said Bosenko. "If they get that evacuation notice, [they should] go when ordered to and don't place themselves or family in danger or the firefighters because that fire can travel quickly and they're putting themselves in danger to come in and do a rescue."
Bosenko added the evacuation center previously set-up in Mt. Shasta has been moved to the Yreka National Guard Armory.
CHP then spoke about the I-5 closures, saying there are both soft and hard closures in place.
A soft closure means they may allow limited access to residents if it's within what the Sheriff's Office determines is a safe area for people to return. A hard closure means only emergency services gets through.
Currently, going northbound, there is a soft closure at Fawndale Road and a hard closure at Riverview Drive in Lakehead. Going southbound, the soft closure is at Mott Road and a hard closure at Gibson Road.
Caltrans then spoke about the current situation with I-5.
There is currently 1,500-2,000 feet of guardrail that has been damaged, drainage that needs to be repaired, culverts that go under the roadway that need to be inspected, 500-800 feet of fence that needs to be replaced, about 3,500 trees that need to be removed, burned road signs, and about 100 feet on concrete median that needs to be repaired or replaced.
Shasta-Trinity Cal Fire Unit Chief Mike Hebrard wrapped up the conference by talking about the initial fire activity that was seen the day the fire broke out, describing it as spreading incredibly fast.
Hebrard said numerous firefighters worked to get people off I-5 and two firefighters suffered burns to their hands, face, and ears working to get people out.
You can see the entire press conference below.
The Delta Fire has grown to 24,558 acres from 22,000 acres Thursday. It is still zero percent contained.
Mandatory evacuations remain in place for residents living from Dog Creek Road north to Sims Road. Mandatory evacuations are also in place for East Fork Road up to Ramshorn Road east to the Trinity/Shasta County line as the fire has crossed the county line.
An evacuation advisory was issued by the Trinity County Sheriff's Office Thursday for East Fork Road to Highway 3.