Breaking News
Get Actionable Insights with InvestingPro+: Start 7 Day FREE Trial Register here
Investing Pro 0
Ad-Free Version. Upgrade your experience. Save up to 40% More details

California wildfires threaten towns, wineries ahead of dangerous weekend

WorldOct 02, 2020 11:07PM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This article has already been saved in your Saved Items
2/2 © Reuters. Firefighters battle the Glass Fire as it encroaches towards a residence in Calistoga, California 2/2

By Adrees Latif

CALISTOGA, Calif. (Reuters) - California fire crews deploying water-dropping helicopters made a defensive stand on Friday against flames raging in the foothills of the Napa Valley wine region as forecasts called for a return of dangerous high winds and hot weather this weekend.

More than 2,500 firefighters were battling the Glass Fire, which broke out last Sunday near the resort community of Calistoga, some 75 miles (120 km) north of San Francisco, and has already destroyed 248 homes or other structures.

Among them were the stately Chateau Boswell Winery north of Napa, and a farmhouse at the landmark Castello di Amorosa winery, where the castle-like main building survived.

Thick smoke poured over deserted Napa Valley communities that would typically be bustling with visitors for the grape harvest.

"Everyone is hunkered down, it's very, very quiet," said Kari Corte, who works at the Ghost Block Estates Winery outside Oakville. She was in her home in Zinfandel, the fire burning less than three miles to the north.

"I've got my bags packed and I'm ready to go," Corte said, recalling that in 2017 she had been forced to flee the town of Atlas (NYSE:ATCO) Peak community during another bad fire year for the wine country.

At some wineries employees stood guard over buildings and crops with bulldozers and water tankers, hoping to serve as a desperate last line of defense if flames made a run out of the foothills.

The Newton Vineyard winery went up in flames on Wednesday, according to a Reuters photographer, who saw rivulets of red wine mixed with ash flowing down its main access road.

Vintners in the area fear the smoke has spoiled much of this year's vintage.


Roughly 52,000 residents were under evacuation orders at least through the weekend, with the fire at only 5% containment, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, or Cal Fire.

The National Weather Service issued red flag warnings for high winds over the next two days.

Rain storms are forecast for the region at the end of next week and firefighters hope they could keep the blaze from entering populated areas again until the showers came.

"It's going to be a big firefight for us in the next 36 hours," Cal Fire operations section chief Mark Brunton said on Thursday. Resources were stretched due to the high number of fires burning across the state, he said.

Some 200 miles (320 km) to the north, crews have made significant progress against the Zogg Fire in the foothills of the Cascade mountain range. Containment had reached 46% as of Friday afternoon, up from 26% a day earlier.

Four people have been killed in the Zogg fire, which has also has destroyed nearly 150 buildings near the town of Redding. No casualties have been reported in the Glass Fire.

Overall, at least 30 people have died since mid-August in a devastating string of wildfires across the U.S. West that have been stoked by bouts of extreme heat, winds and dry-lightning storms that scientists attribute to climate change.

California Governor Gavin Newsom has also blamed decades of poor forest management.

California fires have scorched nearly 6,100 square miles acres (15,800 square km) since January, more than three times the land mass of Delaware and far exceeding the acreage burned during any previous year on record.

California wildfires threaten towns, wineries ahead of dangerous weekend

Related Articles

Add a Comment

Comment Guidelines

We encourage you to use comments to engage with other users, share your perspective and ask questions of authors and each other. However, in order to maintain the high level of discourse we’ve all come to value and expect, please keep the following criteria in mind:  

  •            Enrich the conversation, don’t trash it.

  •           Stay focused and on track. Only post material that’s relevant to the topic being discussed. 

  •           Be respectful. Even negative opinions can be framed positively and diplomatically. Avoid profanity, slander or personal attacks directed at an author or another user. Racism, sexism and other forms of discrimination will not be tolerated.

  • Use standard writing style. Include punctuation and upper and lower cases. Comments that are written in all caps and contain excessive use of symbols will be removed.
  • NOTE: Spam and/or promotional messages and comments containing links will be removed. Phone numbers, email addresses, links to personal or business websites, Skype/Telegram/WhatsApp etc. addresses (including links to groups) will also be removed; self-promotional material or business-related solicitations or PR (ie, contact me for signals/advice etc.), and/or any other comment that contains personal contact specifcs or advertising will be removed as well. In addition, any of the above-mentioned violations may result in suspension of your account.
  • Doxxing. We do not allow any sharing of private or personal contact or other information about any individual or organization. This will result in immediate suspension of the commentor and his or her account.
  • Don’t monopolize the conversation. We appreciate passion and conviction, but we also strongly believe in giving everyone a chance to air their point of view. Therefore, in addition to civil interaction, we expect commenters to offer their opinions succinctly and thoughtfully, but not so repeatedly that others are annoyed or offended. If we receive complaints about individuals who take over a thread or forum, we reserve the right to ban them from the site, without recourse.
  • Only English comments will be allowed.

Perpetrators of spam or abuse will be deleted from the site and prohibited from future registration at’s discretion.

Write your thoughts here
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
Post also to:
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Thanks for your comment. Please note that all comments are pending until approved by our moderators. It may therefore take some time before it appears on our website.
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Add Chart to Comment
Confirm Block

Are you sure you want to block %USER_NAME%?

By doing so, you and %USER_NAME% will not be able to see any of each other's's posts.

%USER_NAME% was successfully added to your Block List

Since you’ve just unblocked this person, you must wait 48 hours before renewing the block.

Report this comment

I feel that this comment is:

Comment flagged

Thank You!

Your report has been sent to our moderators for review
Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.
Continue with Google
Sign up with Email