A portion of the fire line with hose and retardant in place. Photo by John Gay

Minerva Fire – Day 9

7:30 p.m. update:  According to tonight’s briefing, the Minerva Fire is now 64 percent contained and at 4,288 acres. The increase in acres is due to burnout today. There are 1,660 personnel  staffing the fire.

 Noon: According to the latest Forest Service update, now that the immediate threat of the fire is largely abated, firefighters will focus on mopping up hot spots, continuing to strengthen and secure line, and begin suppression rehabilitation. Flames will be visible as material within containment lines burn, and it will continue to be smoky, though that should begin to diminish.

8:30 a.m. update: The voluntary evacuation for downtown Quincy residents was lifted as of 8 a.m. this morning and the evacuation center is closed. The fire is now 56 percent contained and stands at 4,088 acres. Part of the increase in acreage is due to the successful burnouts on the fire.

7 a.m., Sunday, Aug. 6: “Really, really good night.” That’s how Steve Watkins, night ops chief, described last night’s effort to quell the Minerva Fire. Just 90 minutes before the 6 a.m. briefing began, crews working in the Mill Creek drainage area successfully merged two burnouts combining two of the fire’s divisions. Crews in the area also put out hot spots, and mop-up work continued on other areas of the fires.

Weather definitely aided the crews’ work yesterday afternoon and last night with cooler temperatures, light winds and some precipitation, but today’s weather is predicted to be more unsettled with thunderstorms and stronger winds. “Thunderstorms can push fires erratically,” the firefighters were told and they were advised to be on the lookout for “running, crowning and spotting.”

Despite those warnings, the overall tenor of the briefing was decidedly more upbeat than on prior mornings. With the burnouts and line building complete, firefighters now turn their attention to securing line, mopping up, restoring the area, and fighting any spot fires.

“We got all the burning complete, but the work is not complete,” Steve Griffin from incident command told the firefighters. “Keep safe. The mop up, suppression and repair work is just as dangerous as burning and line building.”

Eight helicopters stand ready to assist today as needed.

 

36 thoughts on “Minerva Fire – Day 9

  • August 6, 2017 at 7:07 am
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    *Breathes a sigh of relief*
    Thank you USFS and all support FD people!

    • August 6, 2017 at 8:33 am
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      My nephew Cody Platz is on his way there now from oregon via reno and before that Montana…. They work hard and is greatly appreciated… Thank you all for your courage and and want to help others… Just everyone make it home!

  • August 6, 2017 at 7:14 am
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    Glad to here the update as my brother used to go to school in Quincy. And every year we go on Vacation near there
    Two weeks to go then we will in town .

  • August 6, 2017 at 7:14 am
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    Thanks to all involved for all the hard and dangerous work. I hope you all get to return to your home soon.

  • August 6, 2017 at 7:17 am
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    Just so much gratitude.

    • August 6, 2017 at 11:50 am
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      Way to go guys and gals. Thanks for all you’ve done and all you will do. Bravest hearts all around. Keep up the good work. God bless

  • August 6, 2017 at 7:35 am
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    thank you firefighters, and g bless you!

  • August 6, 2017 at 7:37 am
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    John Gay is awesome. But so are all of the firefighters.

    • August 6, 2017 at 7:53 am
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      I agree – fantastic photo!!! Also, those firefighters have had to fight a relentless beast in horrid conditions and are my heroes!!!!

  • August 6, 2017 at 7:59 am
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    Uhhh , it’s such a relief reading it today , my daughter is doing an interenship near there and I’ve been so worried!! Thanks for all your hard work

  • August 6, 2017 at 8:09 am
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    My husband is on day crew on the fire. It’s so nice to have these updates. I hope he gets to come home soon to me and our girls!!!

    • August 6, 2017 at 12:32 pm
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      awwwwwww..god bless. we are so thankful for his hard work along with all the other firefighters…we back up to the national forest, and have been all kinds of anxious this week….

  • August 6, 2017 at 8:25 am
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    Thank you for all your hard work.

  • August 6, 2017 at 8:58 am
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    Firefighters are awesome!!!! This was well organized. Plumas News coverage of the fire was excellent. . . thank you!

  • August 6, 2017 at 9:15 am
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    Maybe the Morman Church could open its doors to the poor fire fighters who were banished from the fairgrounds to the dry weed filled barren field behind Trilogy. We do owe them alot. We may not have had a County Fair if not for the firefighters and I think it is a crying shame our County Heads…and Churches…have let this happen to them. And the Methodist Church.has the huge room that we share community suppers in…it would nicely accomodate the needs of the fire fighters. Also maybe the Resource/Crisis center could help out and make the use of the showers and laundry facilities they have available for the homeless. I am betting our citizens would be happy to share their resources in gratitude for our fire fighters! Step up County of Plumas….step up Quincy Churches…and anyone who have the means to take care of the hard working men and women who are protecting us. While im at it…why are the facilities at the USFS out by Evergreen not open to these people? Lets get on this…Plumas County leaders….what the heck are you thinking? Take care of our protectors today!

    • August 6, 2017 at 10:27 am
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      Mary, I too am very grateful for the firefighters! Though I no longer live in Quincy, my family does and I’ve been watching the coverage closely. I am amazed by the firefighters’ hard work and bravery! But I want to add that the Methodist Church has been open during the day with refreshments and restroom facilities for firefighters, and apparently the Catholic Church has been open 24/7. I’m wondering if other churches have been doing the same, and I’ve heard several businesses are. I know this is not what you were calling for, but I don’t think the way Quincy is behaving is a “crying shame.” Maybe some of your ideas should be instituted, but I do think people are trying to show their gratitude. God bless everyone today – praying for safety for all!

      • August 6, 2017 at 10:54 am
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        Thanks Carly, you brought up some good examples. One of our stories to be published in Wednesday’s newspaper is a look at a lot of the ways that the community has been thanking the firefighters.

    • August 6, 2017 at 1:35 pm
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      I so agree with this and I’m sure many in our community do too! We need to treat them better than this!

    • August 6, 2017 at 2:01 pm
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      Your concerns for the firefighters is good, but they are well taken care of, there are shower and laundry units available and of course the feeding areas. One of the requirements is that all the firefighters stay in the same general area within firecamp, that is for availability, accountability and also for safety reasons.
      As for the dry grass field they stay in is not that great a concern granted a nice lawn is better but after those folks come and eat an clean up they usually zonk right out and it makes no difference to them whether the grass is green or not, it would be nicer if the night crews had some shade. This is from a retired Forest Firefighter that would gladly have had that open field over some of the Fire Camps I have been in.

      Your concerns for their welfare is noble but don’t worry they are well taken care of.
      Best we can do is keep those signs up an Thank them for their efforts, the free goodies provided by many of the local stores are greatly appreciated also.

      • August 7, 2017 at 7:00 am
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        Thank you C Ray for your comment. Very re assuring and nice to know. Much appreciated!

  • August 6, 2017 at 9:32 am
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    Debra Moore….many people are very curious as to why this fire is not covered by News stations…near and far. Many outside of our County are looking to their news stations for status reports on this fire and nothing can be found. The loss of 4088 acres of our beautiful forest is large, worthy of coverage by news stations. Why exactly is the story not being covered like the.other fires through our state are? It seems odd. And when can we see pics of the fire fighters and the battle they are facing on the other side of the mountain. It should not be a secret to our citizens. This is our County and we deserve to know exactly what is happening. Just as the fire fighters deserve more than a dry for a base.

    • August 6, 2017 at 9:43 am
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      Mary, we at Feather Publishing have no control over what other news outlets choose to cover. There are a number of fires burning in the West — one in nearby Modoc County is at over 80,000 acres and has forced evacuations. While Quincy has been threatened, there were no mandatory evacuations or structures destroyed. As of this morning the acres burned stands at 4,088 and a good portion of that was due to back burns. Other news outlets take these sorts of facts into consideration in deciding what to cover.
      As for there being no coverage of what is happening on the portions of the fire that we can’t see, Feather Publishing sent reporter Victoria Metcalf into the burned area with the Forest Service. There will be a number of photos from that trip in this week’s newspaper. As you can imagine, one can’t simply go into an active burn and take photos.
      I hope that this answers some of your questions.

      • August 6, 2017 at 10:04 am
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        Debra Moore…I was actually thinking you may have or get access to aerial pictures for us. But more important is the issue of the firefighters having a more deserving place to sleep and clean up. Maybe you could speak to the Churches and get them to come together and arrange something? We cant just be so cold as to stick them in the middle of a dry.hot field during their breaks. That does not show the gratitude we owe them. We owe them for saving our everything. How embarassing our leaders are. Somebody step up. You are the newspaper…put some pressure on someone.

        • August 6, 2017 at 10:13 am
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          Mary, there is a complete fire camp set up for the firefighters with cafeteria, sleeping berths, etc. They are required to sleep and stay at camp. For more details, you may call the incident command post at 530-616-8481. The fire camp that is currently established in Quincy is a typical fire camp.

  • August 6, 2017 at 9:47 am
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    What number of firefighters do we have left? And how about aircraft still available? And can we get details on the area affected so far? And should the fire be out by Aug 12th still?

    • August 6, 2017 at 9:55 am
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      There are 1,487 personnel and 8 helicopters currently assigned to this fire. Fixed-wing aircraft are on call. It’s estimated that the fire will be contained (not out) Aug. 12. For more details please visit the website listed below.
      https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/5434/

  • August 6, 2017 at 9:50 am
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    I cannot thank all of the brave firefighters enough..All of you are amazing for the work you do under such dangerous and stressful conditions. Thank you and be safe.xx

  • August 6, 2017 at 10:11 am
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    Debra, Victoria, and others, thank you so, so much for your excellent coverage of this fire! Most of us in Quincy and East Quincy have been dealing with this fire in the most positive way and that is because of all of you!! PCSO, The Forest Service, and Plumas News are keeping us all VERY well informed!! Thank you for all you do!! ❤️

  • August 6, 2017 at 11:58 am
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    I see no lagging of support by any businesses or churches or government for this fire. I too was in the evac zone, of course, and everyone is an armchair general during fires. That is natural. Quincy has handled this very well. And it was a good reality check and wake up call for lollygaggers like myself who thought it could never happen to us. Like the man in the movie The Shining said: “Here’s Johnny!”

  • August 6, 2017 at 4:16 pm
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    The dedicated fire forces and the many members of our community who went so many extra miles to aid, help, & protect us, our homes & our Quincy are definitely more than unsung heros. Love you all !

  • August 6, 2017 at 4:41 pm
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    My husband who is working the fire was taken to the Quincy hospital for severe smoke inhalation, and sent 2hrs ago to the hospital in Reno. Unfortunately and to many people’s frustration, neither I not the hospitals can reach the people on the fire, his crew, or the company he works for to tell them he was sent to Reno for overnight treatment and further observation. When he is released they do not know where to send him (back to the fire or homeward to Eugene Or) or how he will get there ( if they will pick him up etc). Does anyone know how to reach someone on the fire? Any of the crews etc?

    • August 6, 2017 at 5:38 pm
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      In researching phone numbers I think this is the number for the Fire Camp here in Quincy, I hope it helps 530-616-8481, thank your husband for all he does please.

  • August 6, 2017 at 5:43 pm
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    Thank you for this valuable site. I appreciate the information you try so hard to provide in near real time.

  • August 7, 2017 at 6:51 am
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    I apologize to Debra Moore for being so confrontational. But…i watched the fire while it was on the mountain at the end of my street. The resources were leaving town, air support was spotty due to smoke or other reasons. You could tell how hard they battled up there. One spot would get knocked out just in time for another to start. It looked like they were chasing the fire. And they were doing an awesome job! One night the fire was visible on the ridge and it started coming down our side. I couldnt watch anymore and came in. When I went back out a little later, the fire was not coming down the hill and the fire on the ridge was barely visible. Those people up there were incredible…with.no air support much of the time. Then I read that they were booted out of the fairgrounds to the area behind Trilogy. I just felt at the time that that was not right. I just have alot of compassion for these hard working ground crews and feel they deserve the best. I guess they take it in stride and the move was part of the program. I apologize for my comments if they offended. I know how grateful our community is. It shows everywhere and it brings us together. I care too much I guess and out comes my opinion. Sorry

  • August 7, 2017 at 5:34 pm
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    I am extreme grateful for all the notes of appreciation for the firefighters. My son Chris is fighting the fire with a crew from Pennsylvania and as a mom on the east coast, these updates and notes of appreciation mean the world to me. Thank you!

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