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Green Valley Residents Waiting Out the Fire Despite Mandatory Evacuations

SOLANO COUNTY -- A soft but sinister orange glow lights another uneasy night on the southern side of Solano County - a night preceded by a new round of voluntary evacuations in Fairfield's Eastridge community.

Keith Webb is one of thousands with his eyes on this ridge just waiting to see if this side of what's been called the Atlas Fire will explode like the other.

"If the wind comes up then you have to look at it a little differently, but right now it's so calm...that's a long ways away," he said.

He's run from wildfire twice in his life, which is why he's still at home three days after a mandatory evacuation order for the Green Valley area.

His plan is to just wait it out.

"Until I see something much closer than that," said Webb.

"It's always in the back of my mind ... we're one cigarette butt away from all hell breaking loose," said Jeff Hopkins.

Hopkins left as soon as emergency directors gave the word 'go,' and has hovered by the roadblock leading to his condo ever since, trying to see how close flames were inching to it.

His mind has been a roller coaster of emotion.

"I'm going to go back to nothing ... the wind will change. I think I'm gonna be ok ... the wind will change," he described.

FOX40 was able to drive in and see that his Elkhorn Place home was fine as of 5 p.m. Wednesday and let him know.

"Everything's in tact."

"Thank you! Thank you," he replied.

Within the hour more ash did start to fall on the surrounding hills, fraying nerves as all expected the forecasted uptick in winds.

"We had probably about 30 mph winds ... fast wind-driven fire and there was nothing we could really do about it," said Cal Fire Captain Dan Thompson.

Up against that last night, Cal Fire Captain Dan Thompson is wary of what Wednesday night will bring.

The intersection of Rockville Road and Scott could be right in the fire's crosshairs.

"Absolutely if 50 mph winds are what we're expecting ... could get pretty crazy here,' he said.

Crews catch a brief break before they do what they can, cutting more defensible space and clearing debris in case fire does its worst.

"Removing the vegetation to bare mineral soil," said Thompson.

All in hopes of giving flames no place to go.

High winds originally expected to hit the area mid-afternoon are now forecasted to arrive between 11 p.m. Wednesday and 3 a.m. Thursday.