EL DORADO COUNTY, Calif. (KTXL) — Nearby campgrounds have been evacuated as a wildfire burns in the Eldorado National Forest.
The El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office said Tuesday that evacuations in Stumpy Meadows, Volcanoville and Quinette have been lifted as conditions have improved.
“It is important to understand this does not mean the danger is gone,” the sheriff’s office wrote in a Facebook post, saying residents should still be prepared to evacuate if conditions take a turn for the worse.
The Fork Fire has burned roughly 1,667 acres and is 70% contained.
The fire began burning off Wentworth Springs Road east of Gerle Creek on Sept. 8.
USFS officials decided to close all of its campgrounds in the area through Sept. 21.
“It was a tough decision. Obviously, the public doesn’t like to have their access restricted, but that decision was made yesterday,” explained USFS fire prevention technician Jon Clanin. “The boon of that is is if that hadn’t have happened, there potentially would have been hundreds of people in here. There just happened to be a few dozen in here when this fire started up and we were able to get them out of here pretty quickly.”
The cause of the Fork Fire is under investigation and firefighters said they need every possible type of fire prevention they can get from the public.
“The region is at a preparedness level of five. The nation is at a preparedness level of five,” Clanin said. “That means that our suppression organization is as stressed as it can be. That’s what that number means.”