Weather helps crews gain ground on Mission Fire


Firefighters have been able to keep the Mission Fire’s growth at bay going into Thursday, while increasing the containment to 25-percent. The fire has destroyed several homes and continues to put hundreds at-risk.

As of Thursday morning, the Mission Fire has burned 1,035 acres. As firefighters continued their efforts to put it out, Marcie Tipton continued her stay at the evacuation shelter in Oakhurst.

She’s been there since Sunday when the fire first sparked and isn’t minding the getaway. However, seeing the smoke lessen makes her hopeful she’ll be heading home soon.

“Look at the beautiful surroundings,” she said as she looked at the mountains in view in Oakhurst.

Cal Fire captain Dan Olson said the cooler weather and high humidity have helped clear the air.

“By getting that inversion out, it’s allowed us to fly the aircrafts a lot into the fire to help the troops on the ground,” he said.

The aircrafts aren’t just for supporting those on the ground. They also help get crews to hard to reach areas.

“[It’s great] being able to get those folks in the places they need to be, so they can take that action,” Olson said. “Get on the perimeter of the fire and start putting that thing out.”

PG&E crews have been working hard to restore power to affected homes as well. Tipton is looking forward to when it’s all over, but expresses she’s blessed having been evacuated and having her home not damaged.

Gov. Jerry Brown issued a state of emergency in Madera, Mariposa and Tulare Counties Thursday because of all the fire activity.

Olson said increased resources coming in have helped fight the Mission Fire. Congressman Jim Costa announced earlier on Thursday federal aid is coming to help fight the Mission and Railroad Fires.

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