With all current evacuation orders still standing, Sherrif Mark Essick discussed the possibility of repopulating areas of Sonoma County that have been evacuated due to the ongoing Kincade Fire.
“We do know that you’re anxious to get home,” said Essick in a press conference this morning. The sheriff emphasized that the evacuations remain in effect but expressed empathy for those who have been displaced by what is considered a historic evacuation effort of nearly 185,000 residents.
“We are working on repopulation. I don’t have any announcements for you yet but I can tell you that the general idea is we will start in somewhat of the reverse order of evacuations when it comes to repopulation,” the sheriff said.
The sheriff reiterated the importance of the evacuations.
“It’s really first to protect your life. As you’ve heard me talk over the last couple of days, life is the most important thing. We have the ability to predict somewhat where this fire is going. So, we want to get people out in front of that fire to save lives.”
The sheriff added that evacuations not only save lives but help firefighters preserve property. He pointed to Cal Fire’s aggressive and successful attack on the fire in the northeastern area of Windsor last night as an indication that the evacuations are proving effective.
“We had a lot of success yesterday in Windsor. We owe a huge debt of gratitude to our firefighters. The Northern area of Windsor was saved yesterday because of their efforts. And part of that is your efforts to evacuate allowed us to get in there and access that area. So thank you for following our directions.”
He added, “That is truly a success story.”
In the meantime, all current evacuation orders remain in full force and effect. The sheriff expects to have clarity on the repopulation timeline later today.