FRESNO, Calif. - Mandatory evacuations are still in place after a raging fire continues to burn near Yosemite National Park, threatening nearly 5,000 structures.
By Wednesday, the fire had grown to 45,724 acres and was only 7 percent contained.
Gov. Jerry Brown has issued a state of emergency for Mariposa County, where about 2,000 people are under a mandatory evacuation order.
The massive wildfire began ripping through the Central Valley Tuesday, threatening homes, businesses and people.
Officials said eight structures have been destroyed.
Mariposa Lodge Owner Mia Gloor watched from a distance, hoping some way, somehow the fire would stop before getting to her family business.
"Everybody is scared, you'd never think something like this would happen in your town," she said.
Delmer Humphrey lives along Highway 49, directly across from the raging blaze. Despite there being a mandatory evacuation,he sat outside in his wheelchair and watched the flames.
"I feel safe, I'm right behind the highway patrolman's office. They ain't going to leave me," he said.
Cal Fire said steep terrain and strong winds have been creating challenges for them over the past three days, causing the raging blaze to burn more than 45,000 acres.
"We did have a problem earlier today with embers landing and creating spot fires outside of the area we have been concentrating on," Cal Fire Capt. Jerry Fernandez said.
As firefighters work around the clock to get the blaze contained, Humphrey said he will wait to see if it inches closer to his home. If it does, he is going to use a flashlight to get first responders' attention to save him and his dog Serene.
"My dog is my scariest part, the fire can have me, but I won't give my dog up. She deserves to live on, I'm at peace with myself. The Lord can take me when he takes me," he said.
It is also important to note that there is a hospital and jail nearby. Officials said that the patients and inmates are not being evacuated and that at this time it is safer to keep them where they are than to move them to a new location.
DETWILER FIRE INFORMATION
Acres burned: 45,724
Containment: 7 percent
Structures Threatened: 4,966
Structures Destroyed: 8 destroyed and 1 damaged
Evacuation orders are in place for:
- City of Mariposa, Mount Bullion Ridge Road from HWY 49N to CYA Road
- Old Toll Road between Corbett Creek Road and HWY 49N, including Corbert Creek Road.
- Mount Gains Road to No.9 Road including No.9 Road
- Mount Bullion Cut off Road and Agua Fria Road from HWY 49N to HWY 140
- HWY 49N to Baxby Bridge to Agua Fria Road; Area known as Mount Bullion
- HWY 49N from Mount Bullion Ridge Road to Old Toll Road
- Pendola Garden Road from HWY 49N to Old Toll Road (Exit via Old Toll Road only)
Evacuation Advisories are in effect for the following areas: All of CYA Road.
Red Cross Evacuation Shelter:
EV Free Church
50443 School House Road
Fire Information Line: (844) 668-3473
HWY-49 at HWY-132 (Coulterville Rd.) - Restricted access to locals with addresses in La Grange, Coulterville, or Greely Hill only
Bear Valley Rd. at Exchequer Rd.; Hornitos Rd. and Old Toll Rd.; HWY-49 and Mt Bullion Cutoff.; Mt. Gains Rd. at No.9 Rd.; Hwy 49 at Aqua Fria.; Hwy 140 at Aqua Fria.
The communities of Hunters Valley, Bear Valley, and Hornitos continue to be threatened as the fire encroaches on culturally and historically sensitive areas.
Traffic along HWY 41 & 49 will be impacted as a result of road closures on HWY 49. The fire continues to threaten power lines to the south of the incident, which supply power to Yosemite National Park.
Firefighters on the ground as well as aircraft are actively working to contain and suppress the fire. CAL FIRE Incident Management Team 4 assumed command of the incident at 1000 hrs. from the Madera, Mariposa, Merced Unit.