Updates On Loyalton Fire Near Nevada-California Border | KUNR

Updates On Loyalton Fire Near Nevada-California Border

Aug 22, 2020

As of 9:15 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 22, 2020, KUNR is no longer actively updating this web post. For the latest updates on the Loyalton Fire, follow #LoyaltonFire, @TMFPD or @Tahoe_NF on Twitter or visit the InciWeb Incident Overview

Update: Saturday, Aug. 22, 2020 at 9:14 am

The Loyalton Fire has consumed just more than 47,000 acres and is 75 percent contained. All evacuations related to this fire have been lifted and there are no road closures due to this fire.

According to Tahoe National Forest officials on InciWeb, firefighters are mopping up to protect containment lines. Air quality continues to be an issue across the region due to numerous other fires that continue to produce smoke. Check air quality in your area here.

Update: Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020 at 8:04 pm

The Loyalton Fire is now estimated at 46,582 acres with 60% containment. Mandatory evacuation orders remain for Balls Canyon Road and Long Valley Road. All other evacuation orders and advisories have been lifted.

Update: Thursday, Aug. 20, 2020 at 10:40 am

The Loyalton Fire is now 38 percent contained and has burned just over 46,500 acres Northeast of Loyalton, California.

Mandatory evacuation orders remain in effect for Balls Canyon Road and Long Valley Road.

All evacuation orders have been lifted for the following: Copperfield, the City of Loyalton and homes on the south side of Hwy 49 west of Loyalton to Lombardi Point, Chilcoot, Vinton, Cold Springs, Sierra Brooks, Bordertown and the area of Hwy 49 and 70 south to Loyalton and to the east side of Hwy 49.

Smoke and haze will cause low visibility for fire crews Thursday. Also, Red Flag conditions are predicted to continue but at reduced wind speeds.

Update: Wednesday, Aug. 19, 2020 at 8:25 pm

The Loyalton Fire remains at roughly 46,000 acres and 35 percent containment.

The latest information on evacuation orders and advisories related to the Loyalton Fire from InciWeb include multiple updates:

All Evacuation Orders for the City of Loyalton and homes on the south side of Hwy 49 west of Loyalton to Lombardi Point have been lifted.  

All Evacuation Orders for the areas of Chilcoot and Vinton have been lifted.

All Evacuation Orders for the area of Hwy 49 and 70 south to Loyalton, and to the east side of Hwy 49 have been lifted. 

Mandatory Evacuation Orders remain in effect for Balls Canyon Road, Long Valley Road, and Copperfield.

Advisory Evacuation Orders remain in effect for Sierra Brooks.

All Evacuation Orders for Cold Springs and Bordertown have been lifted.

All Evacuation Orders in Lassen County have been lifted. 

Update: Wednesday, Aug. 19, 2020 at 4:14 pm

The Tahoe National Forest released these updated evacuation orders and advisories at 1:30 pm Wednesday on Facebook:

All evacuations in Lassen County have been lifted.

All evacuations for the areas of Cold Springs and Bordertown have been lifted.

Mandatory Evacuation Orders remain in effect for Balls Canyon Road, Long Valley Road, and Copperfield.

Evacuation Advisories remain in effect for Chilcoot, Vinton, the City of Loyalton and homes on the south side of Highway 49 west of Loyalton to Lombardi Point, Sierra Brooks, and in the area of Hwy 49 and 70 south to Loyalton, and to the east side of Hwy 49.

Multiple officials for the Tahoe National Forest were live on Facebook at 4 pm Wednesday to provide the latest updates, which you can access here.

The agency is also reporting that due to thunderstorms and extremely dry conditions, more than 200 fires were reported in Northern California Tuesday. Parts of the region are experiencing moderate or heavy smoke, which is causing poor air quality. View the latest air quality updates.

Update: Wednesday, Aug. 19, 2020 at 9:07 am

Some encouraging news about the Loyalton Fire: It is now 35% contained. Favorable weather conditions allowed crews to make progress on the Loyalton Fire Tuesday. 

The size of the fire is just over 46,000 acres and it has destroyed five homes and six outbuildings.

The evacuation advisories for Cold Springs, Bordertown and Sierra Brooks have been lifted.

Mandatory Evacuation Orders remain in effect for Balls Canyon Road, Long Valley Road, and Copperfield.

Advisory Evacuation Orders remain effect for the following areas:

Chilcoot and Vinton
The City of Loyalton and homes on the south side of Hwy 49 west of Loyalton to Lombardi Point
The area of Hwy 49 and 70 south to Loyalton, and to the east side of Hwy 49

Weather conditions are worse for Wednesday with a Red Flag Warning due to high temperatures, low humidity and gusty winds.

A flare up east of Highway 395 overnight was visible to motorists Tuesday, but it was within the fire perimeter and was quickly extinguished.

Update: Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020 at 8:52 pm

The Tahoe National Forest released the below statement Tuesday evening. All evacuation and road closure details are on InciWeb:

As of 6:30 p.m., no additional structures have been damaged or destroyed by the fire.

Favorable weather conditions allowed crews to get good work done on the Loyalton Fire today, with mop up around the top of the fire to at least 100 ft of the fireline. These lines have held well for several days. On the east side, dozers made good progress in the Balls Canyon area creating containment directly on the fire’s edge. On the southern edge of the fire, firefighters worked to construct indirect fireline (away from the fire’s active edge) along Bald Mountain Ridge toward Bald Mountain, while also working to suppress the fire at its edge as conditions permitted.

Weather conditions were more favorable for the Loyalton Fire today, with no significant thunderstorm activity directly over the fire. Conditions are expected to remain light through the night shift, with a Red Flag Warning predicted for tomorrow for high temperatures and gusty winds.

Increased fire activity has seen more crews committed and resources spread thin nationally. California is currently in Planning Level (PL5) meaning that the Potential for emerging significant wildland fires is high and expected to remain high in multiple geographic areas.

The statement also mentions that a Forest Closure for the Dog Valley area was issued on the Humboldt Toiyabe National Forest due to the fire’s southern spread.

Update: Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020 at 1:25 pm

Fire crews are making progress in fighting the Loyalton Fire.  The blaze is now 30% contained and has burned just over 44,000 acres northeast of Loyalton, California. 

A spokesperson for the Tahoe National Forest says a thunderstorm, which dropped plenty of rain on the fire Tuesday, and calmer winds Monday morning are aiding the over 750 fire fighters and 10 aircraft on the scene.  

In addition to containment, fire crews are focused on the south side of the fire Monday, which is burning in steep terrain and is difficult to approach safely.

The fire was started by lightening on Friday and has destroyed five homes and six outbuildings.

All current evacuation information is on InciWeb.

Spokesperson Adam Mayberry with the Truckee Meadows Fire Protection District released this statement at 1:15 pm Monday:

We are asking our residents in Verdi on both sides of the state line (CA & NV), and the Cold Springs community, to keep a watchful eye on information regarding the Loyalton Fire for the next 24 to 72 hours. There is NO immediate threat at this time, but conditions could change. 

Now is the time to prepare in the event you need to evacuate. Make a To-Go-Kit and remove dry/dead vegetation that could spread and fuel fire to endanger your property. Have plans for small and large animals (Reno Livestock Events Center will shelter large animals). 

Monitor local news sources and Truckee Meadows Fire & Rescue and the USFS Tahoe NF (@TMPFD and @Tahoe_NF) social media platforms. 

For more information, contact the Loyalton Fire Information Line at 530.362.8282 from 7am to 9 pm.

Link to Resources:

Wildfire Education

Evacuation Preparedness

Emergency Supplies or To-Go-Kit

Update: Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020 at 9:26 am

The Loyalton Fire originated east of the town of Loyalton on Friday and is burning to the north and east. Crews made good progress overnight after a strong thunderstorm system moved over the fire area early in the evening Monday.

The fire is now estimated at 44,147 acres and 10% contained. The Loyalton Fire has destroyed five homes and six outbuildings.

Here are the Evacuation Orders that remain in place as of Tuesday morning according to InciWeb

Mandatory Evacuation Orders remain in effect for Balls Canyon Road, Long Valley Road, and Copperfield.

An Advisory Evacuation Order has been put in place for the area of Sierra Brooks. (This was down-graded from mandatory.)

Evacuation Advisory Order has been issued for the City of Loyalton and homes on the south side of Hwy 49 west of Loyalton to Lombardi Point. Residents do not need to leave immediately, but should be prepared to evacuate if conditions change. Sheriff's Office staff is in the area to help if needed.  

Advisory Evacuation Orders remain in effect for the areas of Cold Springs and Bordertown.

Advisory Evacuation Orders remain in effect for the areas of Chilcoot and Vinton.

Advisory Evacuation Orders remain in effect for the area of Hwy 49 and 70 south to Loyalton, and to the east side of Hwy 49.

All Evacuation Orders in Lassen County have been lifted. Residents are allowed to return to their homes.

Road Closures:

Hwy 49 is closed at Railroad Ave. in Loyalton. (New)

Hwy 395 is currently open.

Hwy 70 is currently open, but under advisory as fire activity could warrant another closure.           

Be advised to consider alternative travel routes. Please drive slowly with headlights on and yield to emergency personnel.

Update: Monday, Aug. 17, 2020 at 9:31 pm

The Loyalton Fire is estimated at 39,725 acres with 10 percent containment.

I’m sorry A revised list of evacuation orders, mandatory and advisory, was released on InciWeb at 9 pm Monday: 

Effective immediately, a Mandatory Evacuation Order has been put in place for the area of Sierra Brooks.  

Effective immediately, an Evacuation Advisory has been issued for the City of Loyalton and homes on the south side of Hwy 49 west of Loyalton to Lombardi Point out of abundance of caution. Residents do not need to leave immediately, but should be prepared to evacuate should conditions change. Sheriff's Office staff is in the area to monitor the situation and help if needed.  

Mandatory Evacuation Orders remain in effect for Balls Canyon Road, Long Valley Road, and Copperfield.

Advisory Evacuation Orders remain in effect for the areas of Cold Springs and Bordertown.

Advisory Evacuation Orders remain in effect for the areas of Chilcoot and Vinton.

Advisory Evacuation Orders remain in effect for the area of Hwy 49 and 70 south to

Loyalton, and to the east side of Hwy 49.

All Evacuation Orders in Lassen County have been lifted. Residents are allowed to return to their homes.

Update: Monday, Aug. 17, 2020 at 3:28 pm

The Loyalton Fire has destroyed five homes and six outbuildings. According to officials 600 firefighters are on the scene Monday with help from ten helicopters and fixed wing aircraft.

The fire is now estimated at over 36,295 acres and 5% contained. It started east of Loyalton, California on Friday and is burning in timber, sage and grass.

The area remains under an extreme heat warning along with a Fire Weather Watch for thunderstorms, gusty outflow winds and possible dry lightning. Plus, there is a dense smoke advisory in the area until 5 pm. Visibility could be reduced to 1/2 mile in some places.

Celeste Prescott, spokesperson for the Tahoe National Forest, says many of the mandatory evacuations have been changed to advisory evacuations.  

Mandatory Evacuation Orders remain in effect for the following:  

Balls Canyon Road, Long Valley Road, and Copperfield

Advisory Evacuation Orders are in effect for:

Bordertown

Cold Springs

Chilcoot

Vinton

Sierra Brooks

The areas from Red Rock Road south to Highway 70 

The areas from the intersection of Hwys 49 and 70 east to Hwy 70 and Hwy 395 

The areas from the intersection of Highway 70 and Highway 49 south to Loyalton, and to the east side of Highway 49

Scott Road 

All Lassen County evacuations have been lifted.

Highways 70 and 395 are open but fire activity could warrant another closure. Officials say you should consider using an alternative route. Please drive slowly with headlights on and yield to emergency personnel.

There will be a press conference at 4 pm Monday on the Tahoe National Forest Facebook page: www.facebook.com/TahoeNF

Update: Monday, Aug. 17, 2020 at 11:02 a.m.

Nearly 600 firefighters are battling the Loyalton Fire Monday morning. The fire is estimated at over 36,295 acres and 5% contained. 

It started east of Loyalton, California on Friday and is burning in timber, sage and grass. Fire crews are facing multiple challenges, including steep terrain and limited resources.  

The area remains under an extreme heat warning along with a Fire Weather Watch for thunderstorms, gusty outflow winds and possible dry lightning. Plus, there is a dense smoke advisory until 5pm. Visibility could be reduced to 1/2 mile in some areas.

Many of the mandatory evacuations have been changed to advisory evacuations. Here's the situation as of 9 am Monday:

Mandatory Evacuation Orders remains in effect for Balls Canyon Road, Long Valley Road, Bordertown and Copperfield.

Mandatory Evacuation has been changed to an Advisory Evacuation Order for the residents of Cold Springs.

Mandatory evacuation from Red Rock Road south to Highway 70 has been changed to advisory. 

The Mandatory Evacuation Order in effect for residents from the intersection of Hwy 49 and 70 east to Hwy 70 and Hwy 395 has been changed to advisory.

An evacuation advisory has been issued for the area of Highway 70 and Highway 49 south to Loyalton, and to the east side of Highway 49.

The Mandatory Evacuation Order on Scott Road has been changed to an advisory.

Highways 70 and 395 are now open but fire activity could warrant another closure.  Officials say you should consider using an alternative route. Please drive slowly with headlights on and yield to emergency personnel.

Update: Sunday, Aug. 16, 2020 at 9:56 p.m.

According to the InciWeb incident overview for the Loyalton Fire, several areas continue to have mandatory evacuations:

Effective immediately, a Mandatory Evacuation Order has been issued for residents from the intersection of Red Rock Road (California) and Hwy 395 to the State line.

Effective immediately, Mandatory Evacuation Order has been issued for residents on Scott Road on the north side of Hwy 70.

Effective immediately, a Mandatory Evacuation Order has been issued for residents from the intersection of Hwy 49 and 70 east to Hwy 70 and Hwy 395. Hwy 395 south to the state line. This encompasses everything south of Hwy 70 and west of 395.

Effective immediately, Mandatory Evacuation Orders have been issued for Balls Canyon Road, Long Valley Road, Bordertown and Copperfield. Bordertown/Cold Springs are limited to the west of 395.

The Loyalton Fire is burning “north and east adjacent of the areas of Beckwourth Pass and Hallelujah Junction,” according to InciWeb. The blaze has consumed nearly 30,000 acres and is zero percent contained.

Update: Sunday, Aug. 16, 2020 at 5:29 p.m.

While there is currently no containment on the Loyalton Fire, officials say they expect to have at least some containment by early Monday morning.

The Loyalton Fire, which began Friday afternoon, has now swelled to 29,829 acres.

Impacts from smoke can be felt beyond the fire area, including in Reno. Officials are urging the public to not call 9-1-1 to report smoke, as it ties up the lines for other emergencies.

According to the U.S. Forest Service, the following mandatory evacuations are in effect:

  • Intersection of Red Rock Road (California) and Highway 395 to the state line
  • Scott Road on the north side of Highway 70
  • Intersection of Highway 49 and 70 east to Highways 70 and 395
  • Highway 395 south to the state line. This includes everything south of Highway 70 and west of Highway 395.

An evacuation advisory has been issued for the north side of Highway 70 and the east side of Highway 395. An emergency shelter has been set up at the Washoe County Senior Services.

For California residents who need emergency shelter, call the Lassen County Emergency Shelter at (530) 250-9088. Those with special needs can call (530) 257-6121.

A Red Flag Warning has been issued for the fire area, meaning the conditions are ripe for more fires to spark. Officials are urging all residents to avoid any activity that could cause a fire.

Air quality in the Reno/Sparks area has reached an unhealthy level, which could have impacts to people who have respiratory issues or are sensitive to smoke.