tv Today in the Bay NBC October 12, 2017 5:00am-6:01am PDT
now ghost towns with thousands left with nothing but ash. >> it takes your life away, the things that you worked for, the things that you cherished. >> and the fight to contain these fast moving flames is just beginning. we are live on the front lives as more people flee their homes and firefighters struggle to keep up. nbc bay area's coverage on the north bay wildfires continues right now. >> good morning, and thank you for joining us, i'm marcus washington. >> and i'm laura garcia. no matter where you are you will likely experience part of this event as you walk out the door as smoke and ash bill lows over the entire bay area. in sonoma county this is new video from geyserville, shifting winds are atting new urgency for firefighters desperately trying to hold the line. the headlines for this half hour, mandatory evacuations have been ordered for a number of communities including residents in parts of geyserville and sonoma. the number of confirmed fire-related deaths in northern california is now at 23
including 13 in sonoma county. of the more than 600 missing persons reporting in sonoma county about half have now been located. some 20,000 evacuees are in temporary shelters and at least 3,500 homes and businesses are destroyed. >> eight different fires in napa, solano and solano counties are burning, more than 100,000 acres have been destroyed. in this map you can see just how far it's expanded into three bay area unt couldees. also mandatory evacuations now in effect in parts of geyserville, calistoga and sonoma as well as skroanta rosa. now, as of the atlas fire it is continuing to grow. there are evacuation advisories in solano county. >> let's get a check of conditions on the ground there. anser hassan joins us live from fairfield right now. good morning. >> reporter: good morning. good morning, laura. i spoke with fairfield police just a short while ago, they say the good news is that the fire
has not reached the city limits and they say the wind has actually been pushing the fire in the opposite direction so that may help, but the fire, as you can see above me, is about three miles away. that you are looking at right now is the fire line. this is the east ridge green valley area. a voluntary evacuation order was issued for this area and all residents on the west side of interstate 80 are advised to be prepared to evacuate. now, as of 1:00 a.m. this is what the atlas fire looked like, this is a tweet from one of our viewers in fairfield, it was taken from mt. howell. residents in the ranch chose solano neighborhood are under an evacuation right now, but they are encouraging everyone to pack a bag and be ready to leave on short notice. people have found shelter at one of the three evacuations en is terse in fairfield, one of them is a solano community center.
some of the folks have been parked out with their rvs in the parking lot, others are inside. we spoke to one of the volunteers he says for many of the people this has been a surreal experience to have to leave their homes and helplessly watch as the fire approaches the city. >> the simple fact people that are, you know, wondering what's happening to their homes, do they still have a home, you know, some are coming all the way from lake berryessa which is quite a ways from here. >> reporter: a lot of people struggling to deal with this fire situation right now. as for schools, the school district has made an announcement on their website that fairfield schools will be closed through friday. reporting live in fairfield, anser hassan, "today in the bay." >> have to take precautions for the kids. thank you. meantime, the winds are escalating the situation for firefighters. meteorologist rob mayeda continues our team coverage with the conditions in the north bay. >> we're starting to see a few
changes as we approach sunrise, winds have been relatively light across some of the hilltops overnight but beginning to see those changes around santa rosa into novato, 7 to 13 mile per hour winds, on some of the hilltops into napa county wind speeds up to about 25 miles per hour and this trend we think will continue as we go through the midmorning hours, you can see as those north winds pick up humidity levels begin to drop off approaching lunchtime, 13% around napa, 18% fairfield, down to 10% in napa by 1:30 in the afternoon, then as the north winds begin to back off humidity levels begin to make a come back. air quality a big concern, unhealthy air from the north bay into the central bay. we will show you based on the winds how we think the snow will play out today from morning to midday set up across the central bay, by the evening moving more into the tri-valley and east bay, into friday morning you still see those areas of moderate to dense smoke from the north bay into the east bay valleys. >> spare the air day, worst air
quality north county, unhealthy air for the entire bay area and the spare the air episodes will continue up and through this upcoming weekend. back to you. >> thanks, rob. in sonoma county right now there is a mandatory evacuation in order for guyser vil. >> "today in the bay's" bob redell filed this report from the evacuation zone. >> reporter: you can see it burning brightly in the background, that's the pocket fire, it's burning on the northern edge of geyserville a small town in sonoma county. according to the latest update from cal fire it's burned at least 4,000 acres with little to no containment. remember, we are under a red flag warning because of low humidities and the possibility of high winds and gusts but i just spoke to a cal fire firefighter, he says, yes, it was gusty yesterday afternoon, but right now not so much. not seeing the kind of winds that were forecasted. so in his opinion that's a good
thing, but there is still a mandatory evacuation in effect for parts of geyserville in case that fire enters the town, the evacuation was ordered around 6:00 last night for highway 128 east to river rock casino, south on 128 from guysers road up to cal spipine. firefighters on stand by in case the pocket fire continues to come down the hill. want to go to scott alonso he is the spokesperson for solano county. you had good news a half an hour ago, that tubbs fire is 10% contained. >> yes, good morning. yeah, we are excited about this development, our firefighters are doing an amazing job out in the field and the tubbs fire which is the largest fire
burning in sonoma county is now 10% contained according to cal fire. we're excited about that development, however, there are other fires still burning, still posing threats. it is a dangerous situation out in the area. there are mandatory evacuations that we had to issue late last night in geyserville as you mentioned before, parts of sonoma and also there was an advisory evacuation issued to northeast santa rosa, a large part of santa rosa is now under an advisory evacuation notice. so that notifies individuals that conditions can change rapidly with these fires so they need to be prepared to leave immediately if that mandatory evacuation goes out. >> what do you say to people -- because i know a lot of people when they are asked to leave their homes they want to get back and want to get back to normal as quickly as possible. what can people do to make sure everything runs as smoothly as possible and that everyone is safe from the evacuees to those working to battle the fire?
>> i think we totally understand that people want to return home as fast as possible, they want to maybe find a pet they left behind or important valuables, but be prepared ahead of time. have an exit plan, get a go bag, bring water, bring your cellphone charger. don't forget closed toed shoes, don't forget socks, things that you don't think about in the heat of the moment, but be prepared and that will help you don the line so when that call comes in you may only have machines to escape. be prepared ahead of time will help our first responders get to the scene and hopefully save your property. >> i would imagine, ian, some of the evacuation centers you have everything from people with literally just the clothes on their back to people with their cars packed with everything they can put in there. >> we have a lot of needs at the shelters, we are meeting those needs by providing medical supplies, information on unemployment insurance, how to contact your local pharmacy to get medication that you may have left behind and we also have
mental health services so a wide range of options are available for folks and a lot of the shelters are taking donations. you can usually check on social media depending on which shelter needs, they do vary, but we are seeing a lot of good will from the community providing socks, food, you know, sleeping bags, blankets. it's been really inspiring to see folks come together and helping their neighbors. >> right. i have heard a lot of drives going on this weekend as well and people trying to make trips up there to try to drop off some of these things. scott, we know you are so busy with you by appreciate the time you took to join us this morning. 5:09 right now. i want to take a look as we continue to look at some of the really extraordinary photos because there's so many hot spots and we see that, you know, first responders have been going door to door to make sure some of those evacuees have been able to go out and get out as quickly as they could, those mandatory
evacuations in geyserville. this is a live look this morning at sonoma plaza. you see how quiet it is there. such a concern. i remember talking to a friend of mine who has a home in sonoma, on monday she was like, we're good, we're safe, but as these conditions change to rapidly things have changed and so many people need to get out of the area now. >> it's causing a lot of congestion on the roadways. we want to go to mike inouye who is keeping track on what's going on on those roads. a lot of congestion up there. >> definitely. scott has done a great job from sonoma county, you guys just did an interview with him. we talked about calistoga getting evacuated yesterday afternoon and sonoma evacuated now and that's a lot of surface street traffic. we have had closures for 128 here, over here, 128 goes for a significant portion of this north bay shot all the way in towards geyserville, bob is talking about the fact that it's open, that's the way to get out of geyserville, closed through
calistoga, closed past the atlas fire. a lot of folks were forced to come down 121, highway 12, 116, flooding these roadways from calistoga and sonoma evacuations. now, the latest i heard was that there was a closure for 121 also getting down between highway 12 and 37 that would take you down toward this way if you need to get to vallejo or novato. that was a problem. i haven't heard about it reopening but i haven't found any updates from chp. i would say avoid that portion and get over towards 101 as best you can because it is still open through these areas, so is highway 37. 101 through santa rosa also open but the off ramps they will not let you into the city. that traffic flow will slow as it did for the last couple days, folks were slowing to see the closures signs and read what's going on. coming up on "today in the bay" our breaking news coverage of the north bay wildfires continues. this is a situation that is changing by the minute, the evacuations and where those
we have a red flag warnings, north bay, east bay, south bay hills, we will take a closer look at the winds and the impact on our air quality coming up. and the smoke from these wildfires is really drifting in all parts of the bay area. right now you can see the air quality right there, being called the dirtiest it's ever been and school districts are either keeping kids inside or canceling classes completely. "today in the bay's" kris sanchez is live in fremont with a look at how you can stay safe as the air quality deteriorates. >> reporter: hi there, marcus. right from the beginning the air was so bad, the smoke was so thick and so heavy that people as far as 100 miles away from the fire zones were feeling the affects on their health because of that fire. i want to show you this map from the air quality management district, it's a realtime map and green is good and there is not a speck of it on any part of that map. orange is unhealthy for sensitive groups including the elderly and children and red is
unhealthy for everyone. according to the air district this is the worst air we have had since they started tracking it 17 years ago. >> we're seeing elevated levels of particulate matter that are higher than we have ever seen since we began measuring that in 2000. >> reporter: now, if you are close to the north bay fires you should seek shelter or leave the area all together if you can. use an n95 mask, i will show you what to look for in just a moment and for everyone else away from the area, stay indoors if you can, keep the windows and doors closed, keep the ac on recirculate in your home or car so you are not sucking in that bad air. that is an n95 mask, it's not a regular surgical mask, it has a filter that will pull out that particulate matter, that is the problem for lungs, it clogs the airways and that is what the problem is for young children, the elderly and folks with
respiratory trouble. i got this two pack for about $7 at a lowe's hardware store, i know other hardware stores carry them as well. i have also found them online so you can probably have them delivered to your home. those regular surgical masks that you might have or the band nas that sometimes we use when we go to fires, those are not going to protect your lungs though they will make the air a little bit less stinky. coming up in the next 15 minutes i will show you how schools are responding. you talked about some of them canceling classes all together, other schools are doing things a little differently, i will show you what you should expect from your school district and how you can continue to track those conditions for yourself and for your family. in fremont, kris sanchez, "today in the bay." >> a lot of recess inside today, a lot of pe as well. thank you very much. we want to go back to napa county where some people have spent days in shelters and this situation is not getting any better. >> nbc bay area's jay gray live at the napa valley college evacuation center. what's the mood of people you
are talking to? is there any hope out there? >> reporter: well, always hope but a lot of frustration as well and a lot of people just on edge because they don't know at this point what's happened to their homes. you guys were talking about the air quality there. we continue to have smoke and ash in the air here at times it looks like starting to snow, looks like we're getting some flurries, that's how much continues to fall here. these shelters are open across the strike zone right now, we are in front of one here, an evacuation shelter, 300 people inside here and that number is going to grow according to officials, as will the fires pushed by winds at times, gusting over 40 miles an hour. thousands across the region are in shelters right now, not only serving as a place to run to from the flames, but also these are donation centers so people bringing by water, food, clothing, things that will be desperately needed not only the next couple of days but weeks and months especially for those who have lost everything in
these fires. the fight continues. firefighters getting some support overnight, strike teams from around the country moving in along with the national guard. the focus here continues to be not only on containment, they're working on that, but also saving lives, saving property and structures where they can, that's going to continue as well. back to you. >> jay gray with the very latest for us from napa valley college. >> a lot of people are still talking about what's going on with the weather today. those winds expected to pick up today which is a frightening thing for a lot of those people on stand by right now. >> we will be watching wind speeds accelerating just after sunrise today through midday, that has an impact on our air quality, too, pushing more smoke to the south. right now wind speeds around the fire lines relatively light and that has been a welcomed sight overnight, wind speeds generally lower than the expectations were for those hilltops overnight, but here is how things look moving forward. first in terms of humidity 13%
to 18%, bone dry conditions in the north bay out towards solano county. 10% in napa, that's the last thing firefighters need is humidity levels dropping, they start to make a come back towards the evening. right now wind speeds north at 18 and the hills around napa accelerating from 7:30 to midday and then decreasing once we head into the afternoon and evening where the red flag warning will expire. current view of the air quality shows unhealthy air around the central bay and our smoke model future cast from morning to midday keeps the smoke pouring south down towards san jose, transitioning maybe less away from the santa clara valley, maybe more so out towards the tri-valley by tomorrow morning. smoke a big part of the forecast here not just for today but over the next three days, the worst air quality for smoke pollution obviously in the north bay up towards contra costa county.
temperatures today in the 60s to mid and low 70s in and around the south bay. if you want to find weather relief in terms of bringing an end to these fire conditions possibly late wednesday, next thursday could see rain ahead, but more north winds likely to come back early saturday morning. >> we are tracking the fire and movement there. we are also looking at what transportation options you have coming through the north bay and 101 continues to be a great option taking you all the way up in past the santa rosa area and geyserville, the changes up there and evacuation. sonoma has held up nicely despite the evacuation and all that traffic last night as folks left the area, we are showing there is maybe closures and limited traffic flow between there and highway 37. keep that in mind. over here the fire shifted, anser was talking about green valley and suisan valley road was closed for a period of time. there is traffic control through the area, same thing for green valley road. be careful in the area. as a result of all that traffic
control we have no more sonoma county transit. they tried service yesterday, suspended until further notice there. santa rosa city bus there saturday stfr sill limited there as well as the vine and smart trains through the area. keep that in mind. if you are planning on driving up there to see what things are looking like don't do it, stay out of the area, we have the pick tuesday for you, they need to do the work, folks. back to you. >> thank you, mike. 5:22. coming up we are staying on top of this breaking news in the north bay and we're also seeing breathtaking mansion from the people who have actually lived through this disaster. >> our coverage continues on line on twitter, we're shared harrowing new video of the flames from napa overnight. follow us @nbcbayarea. some of the most startling
es 5:25. welcome back now. some of the most startling images of the destruction from the north bay wildfires is coming from those who survived it. >> exactly. they were in it. scott mcgrew, people capturing images of both the awful and really the touching. >> that's really said, laura. we will start with the awful, the destruction. a home in flames, take a look, the photographer asking if nature were trying to tell him something. one of the things our crews have pointed out as they pass by is the wreckage of people's homes, you can usually pick out the appliances, the washers and the dryers and the stoves, but
little else everything else melted and gone to ash. there are some moments of love as the community comes together. here is an employee of the marin county humane society taking in an evacuated puppy, the puppy is going to be just fine. the wineries of course hit hard as well, some glass sculpture melted away with the sunset behind it at paradise ridge winery. this is a picture from someone who works at that winery or worked there, the winery is gone. she wanted everyone to see this picture, it is the love sculpture outside of the tasting room, the tasting room is gone but as she puts it, marcus and laura, love survives. >> love always does. thank you very much. really stunning images. coming up, our team coverage continues. flames on the move this morning as winds pick up in the north bay. it is a situation changing by the minute, we will bring you up to speed.
it's scary. and it's not -- we are not done yet. >> the battle just beginning, flames spreading by the minute in the north bay. we're live with where the wildfires are spreading and the new dangers firefighters are facing at this hour. good morning and thank you for joining us, i'm laura garcia. >> and i'm marcus washington. we are keeping a close eye on the shifting winds as firefighters already stretched thin trying to knock down more than half a dozen wildfires in the area. and the red flag warning is in effect through this afternoon
with smoke and cash unavoidable wherever you are this morning. the headlines this half hour, the new evacuations include residents in parts of geyserville and sonoma, the number of confirmed fire-related deaths in northern california is now at 23, including 13 in sonoma county. some 20,000 evacuees are in temporary shelters and at least 3,500 homes and businesses are destroyed. also it's not just schools in the fire zone that are closed today, classes are canceled elsewhere due to unhealthy air quality. >> eight different fires in napa, sonoma and solano counties are burning, more than 100,000 acres have been destroyed. in this map you can see how far it has expanded into three bay area counties. also mandatory evacuations now in effect for parts of geyserville, calistoga, sonoma and santa rosa. as the atlas fire grows there are evacuation as receivers in solano county. let's get a check of conditions on the ground there, anser
hassan joins us live near fairfield this morning. >> reporter: good morning, laura. it has been tough out here, but some good news, fire officials believe that the winds may be actually blowing the fire in the opposite direction, if you take a look up there, that's the fire line. that is the atlas fire that you're looking at right now. it hasn't reached the city limits but it's less than three miles away. now, we are at east ridge and green valley, mandatory evacuations orders have been issued for the green valley area but a voluntary evacuation order was issued for east ridge. if you live in solano or rancho solano neighborhood or west of i-80 fairfield officials are advising officials to pack a bag and be ready to leave on short notice. the atlas fire has burned over 4 # 2,000 acres and only 3% contained. we spoke with some people who have left their homes who are at the shelters, there's three of them, three evacuation centers in fairfield right now, this one is a solano community center,
folks have been parked out in their rvs, others inside, it's being run by the salvation army and volunteers here say donations from the community such as food and water are making a huge difference. >> this shows the unity that is just outpouring, it's ridiculous how great it is. it's very important to show that we are united. we are united people here. >> reporter: definitely times like this when community support can make a big difference. fairfield police are advising people not to call the dispatch center, they say they have been inundated with phone calls, they say check your social media, feed i can't and twitter for updates there. as we mentioned earlier all schools in fairfield are closed through friday because of this worsening air conditions. reporting live in fairfield, anser hassan, "today in the bay." >> thank you.
the winds are escalating, the situation for firefighters. >> meteorologist rob mayeda continues our team coverage this morning with the conditions in the north bay right now. >> atlas peak reporting a wind gust up to 20 miles per hour, in lower elevations wind speeds not to bad. still yet to pick up across most of the north bay. all those active fires north of san francisco as the strongest winds of the day pick up late morning to about lunchtime and early afternoon. notice what it will do to the humidity levels into the teens, napa into fairfield, highest fire danger risk for today 11:30 this morning to 1:30 in the afternoon. as the north winds back off humidity levels start to recover by 5:00. now, our wind speeds begin to pick up in the hilltops 8:00 a.m. through 11:00 a.m. and start to decrease as we head into the evening and that's that north wind direction unfortunately that's going to bring a lot more smoke across
the bay area today. worst air quality levels will be in those north bay counties out towards solano county and contra costa counties, spare the air day today and if the wind pattern is staying the same through the weekend we will see the unhealthy air levels continuing through sunday. at 5:34 want to go to josh ruben stein from cal fire. do you have any new updates on the fire? >> the only information i can provide you is the numbers that we had as of last night and we are still at about 30,000 acres, the fire wasn't moving in any one particular direction in any significant fashion, but as the weather folks have talked, the concern is in the winds upcoming in the next few hours. >> josh, talk to us about the plan as we know those winds are expected to speed up today. what is the plan with combating that fire with that in place? >> well, we're fighting the fire very, very aggressively, i can't
tell you how hard the men and women have been working on the fire line. it's a coordinated effort between the folks who are boots on the ground as we call them and air attack that we had ten helicopters yesterday flying, we had four fixed wing including the vlat which is the very large air tanker. it's a coordinated effort now. if we have an inversion layer, if the smoke is so slow that the air code and the pilots can't fly that could potentially affect the fire fight on the ground. >> that's what i was going to ask you about if that smoke is so thick you may have trouble getting those tankers off the ground because the visibility would be so low. >> that's correct, and that's what hampered us earlier in the week. a few days ago those aircraft couldn't fly, we had good visibility yesterday, we were able to get them off the ground and they had a great positive effect, like i said, in coordinating with the folks in regards to the fire fight. we will see what happens this morning, it's still a little too
dark for them to get up and if they have clear obviously your listeners can feel comfortable that those aircraft may be up in the air. >> all right. >> they may be grounded for a little bit if we have poor visibility. >> which could make it tough for the fight but we do have the ground crews as well. tell us about some of the shifts that they are working. i heard it's pretty extensive. >> well, originally when the fire first broke out there were crews that were working for upwards of 40 hours or so. as relief forces come in from other fires, as relief courses come in from southern california and out of state i might add we are able to provide those folks well deserved rest, they will come into base camp, get food, restock their supplies, fix anything that's wrong with their engines and get some rest then they go on a rotation. that's one of the reasons why we have so many firefighters that are on any particular incident of this magnitude, you have to provide a proper work/rest ratio. they are working 24 hours
straight. >> and the physicality of what they're doing it could impair their decision making ability. they just need rest. it's good to hear we're getting outside resources. >> absolutely. i have to tell you that the firefighters that are working not only on this incident but on the other incidents, profession in general, they are athletes. they are some of the most well conditioned people that i have ever had the pleasure of meeting. they work out very, very hard, they take this work very, very seriously, they're putting in hose lace of upwards of 10,000 feet, climbing mountains with 60 pounds on their back, it's an unbelievable feet. >> they have some of the most dedicated and kindest people that i have ever met. while people are evacuating away interest these fires they are going towards them. >> yes. >> josh, thanks so much for joining us. that was josh rubenstein from cal fire giving us an update on the conditions up there and what tier are up against. >> it's a tough job so thank you to all of them. smoke is drifting to all
parts of the bay area, we have been telling matt, you can notice it as we walk out the door. east bay schools are closing. >> they include districts in antioch, martinez, mt. diablo and pittsburg. west contra costa unified school district. here is an official from that school explaining the decision. >> it's a difficult decision to close schools and just the fires and the inability to predict exactly how bad it will be forced this decision. >> students, staff, people in the community are feeling the effects of the smoke and the air quality and so obviously that's something we want to make sure that we are addressing and aware of. >> and schools in livermore and fremont are open today, but canceling outdoor activity. >> no doubt like a lot of schools. "today in the bay's" kris sanchez live in treatment with what schools are doing to try to protect their kids. parents are concerned. >> reporter: hi there, laura and marcus. you heard it is a very difficult decision, it's no little thing when you close a school, cancel
classes, there is the instructional time that students have to make up later and then there is the campus wide events like homecoming which now is on the line for a lot of different schools, but with the air quality as bad as we have seen and the unhealthy range for children in particular, a lot of schools not willing to put their students' health on the line. i got notice from my school district and chances you did, too, about what's happening to keep the students safe short of canceling classes. here are some examples now, students with health concerns will have excused absences if they stay home in the oakland unified school district, a lot of districts are canceling outdoor sports practices and games, that includes fremont and livermore as you mentioned and even as far south as los gatos. kids in cupertino will have indoor lunch and recess, a lot of other schools doing the same thing and a lot of campuses will keep the windows and doors closed. san jose unified tells me they have air filtration systems as well. non-school sporting teams also
canceling practices as well. >> we've got kids from seven years old all the way up to 19, so we always try to keep the best interest of the children in mind. >> reporter: so take a look at this map. this is the air district realtime map that you can use to monitor conditions for yourself or your family. i did post a link to that on my twitter page, i will put it up on my facebook page as soon as we finnish here. coming up at 6:30 i will show you the kinds of masks that you will want to get if you have to be outside, if you have to work outside or if you live close to those burn areas. there is something in particular that you should be looking for. we will also post that on facebook and twitter as well. in fremont, kris sanchez, "today in the bay." >> thanks so much. let's check that morning commute with mike. he is also keeping tabs on everything going on in the north bay. >> that's right with those evacuations and the winds shifting, the fire shifting, we have shifting closures as well. it does sound like and i've
doubled checked a couple of sources it does sound like lake view highway has reopened south of the evacuation zone over in sonoma. calistoga remains 128 and 29, 128 over here coming down through the atlas area also closed, we have 101 open but the off ramps in santa rosa are off limits, so the city of santa rosa because of that curfew. we are looking over here, the fire creeping over. i just got word of a fire interstate 80 at pedrik, this fire just popped up but doesn't sound like it's related necessarily to the fire going on to the west side of the freeway coming all the way down suisan valley drive is blocked as well. the rest of your commute going over towards the bay bridge, maze and backup over the toll plaza the metering lights are on. >> still early but a lot of people up and about. coming up, we're going to check in with vinay arena to
into three bay area counties now and we know that the air quality across the entire bay area is of great concern, take caution as you head out the door this morning. it's quarter to 6:00 right now. soldiers from california national guard have arrived on the scene to help keep watch for looters and other problems. >> the guardsmen coming up from southern california. scott mcgrew, help pouring in from across the west, out of state. >> it's part of california's system of mutual aid, it's been a model for the country, ours is easily the biggest system most would say the best. this is the scene last night at moffett field as the 160th infantry regiment arrived from the los angeles area. many of these men and women have fought in iraq, a previous generation from this unit provided security during the north ridge earthquake. most have regular jobs and found out yesterday afternoon they need to call their offices and say they are headed to northern california. >> this is what we do, i mean,
we're sold injuries and we serve the state of california as well as the united states and at this moment we're serving our fellow citizens. my company is prepared to do whatever it takes to support the local officials in this area and also the citizens. >> they are coming from a region with their own set of wildfires though not as bad as ours. the number of cities and counties coming to our aid is staggering. i just got a list a few moments ago. there are more than 1,000 entries, everything from san manuel fire department, redlands, big bear, santa clara, long beach, san francisco, lots from l.a. fire department, rockland, forest hill, fallen leaf, modesto, california, vista fire protection, compton, downey, all kinds. the federal government helping to pay for all that with grants that cover 75% of the costs of fighting the fires. meanwhile, as so much help comes
our way more californians were sent to puerto rico to help in the hurricane recovery to join search and rescue crews from fire departments in l.a. and sacramento, they are headed to san juan. so everybody, laura, and marcus, helping everybody out. >>est that a great thing to hear about. just people putting drives together, individuals to help all the evacuees. well, the smoke that we've been talking about as you walk out the door not just a problem for schools. sfo had to cancel 80 flights because of low visibility. so far no delays or cancellations in oakland or san jose. we're keeping tabs on it. >> right now just walking out of the building yesterday you could see it. the hads was right there. you made you think is the fire nearby but it's not. >> so many school children out there will be kept indoors today no doubt because of recess and pe classes, the smoke a big concern, the wind factors, though, it would be nice to ble
it out, but these winds are blowing the flames. >> we need the sea breeze pick up which would help bring up the humidity levels and push the smoke off to the east. instead it's a return to the north winds, north at 7:00 around santa rosa but some of the hilltops atlas peek wind gusts up close to 20 miles per hour. it's that wind direction that will bring in more smoke from north to south. that wind forecast critically important for smoke pollution around the bay area. also important for firefighting efforts, this is about what you what you to see from 11:30 to early afternoon, humidity levels at times, napa out towards fairfield could be in the teens. look how bone dry that is, 10 to 20% humidity at times in the north bay counties so solano county in the early afternoon. as the north winds begin to back off humidity levels try to make a come back from 5:00 this evening where the red flag warning will expire for the bay area. san jose out towards the tri-valley and north bay, unfortunately it does look like
we will see another north wind episode late tomorrow into saturday. warmer temperatures for the end of the weekend and what happens some relief coming around this time next week, could see a chance of rain making a come back in the forecast which would certainly be a welcome sight, the rain would help to clear out our skies which right now the zoomed in view over the bay area shows you unhealthy air from the north bay, san francisco, into the east bay and out near fremont this morning. that's where vianey arana joins us with a closer look at the wind forecast and when that smoke may start to clear out of here. >> reporter: we've been keeping a close eye on this since the fire first broke out last weekend and unfortunately those winds play a very large role when it comes to that smoke and just seeing it and smelling it and we've actually got some video if we can pop that up of what it looked like yesterday. this is daylight video of that thick smog, hazy skies, it even almost looked like a bit of an orange gloom over some areas.
even as far down as the south bay along the peninsula people were really reporting a sense of smells of smoke i saw all over twitter and facebook. even if you don't live near those wildfire areas. let's talk about the winds and take a look at that timeline. thursday at about 7:00 a.m. we can expect to see the winds picking up today at about 22 miles per hour coming out of the napa area and that's going to raise a big red flag, a big moment of concern as the firefighters really continue to fight this fire, but also as the winds come in from the north that's going to spread a lot of that air and that smog and all of that thick unhealthy air quality further down south. so regardless of if you live near these wildfires or far enough away it's always good to be on alert. if you have pets that are typically outside in the backyard area, bring them inside. if it's not safe for you, it's not safe for them, either. so just please remember to keep that in mind. of course, as you're driving
throughout the day today as they continue to fight this fire they will continue to see that smog in the area and those hazy skies. so if you're going to be out on the roads please don't pull over and start taking pictures, that does create a road hazard. we are going to send things over to mike for a look at how the roads are doing. >> that was a great note for drivers and a reminder those freeways are open highway 101 through santa rosa the off ramps mostly closed because of the fire related area, stay out of the area if you don't have required business through that portion of the north bay. if you are in the north bay we are looking at some service for many of the agencies limited or saturday service but no service for sonoma county transit. they tried to get service runni running, cannot. yesterday they tried to have some buses there. we are talking about the shift in the fires, anser hassan talks about the changes over here, bringing the fire close to i-80.
we are looking at the traffic flow which was affected for i-80, some folks going down 680 or taking a longer route to i-5 and 580. they were allowed on 580 yesterday but they are not allowed on 580 today. back to normal traffic flow approaching the bay bridge. here is the san mateo bridge, a gentle build here west across toward the peninsula and you see that haze impeding our view of the lights for the high-rise, guys. back to you. coming up we're staying on some of fires burning in the north bay, a red flag warning in effect, the latest coming up. happening now breaking news the taliban has released an american woman along with her canadian husband and her three children, the family was kidnapped by the militant group while miking in afghanistan back in 2012. nbc news is working to find out more details about the family's release, we will bring it to you as soon as we get them. also newer' learning the poor air quality forcing the cancellation of the virgin sport
give you a live look, this is near the atlas fire. it appears to have sparked up again near 221 and kaiser road. we have crews out there on the scene. there are eight different fires in napa, solano and sonoma county burning right now, more than 8,000 acres destroyed so far. high wind advisory today that could be very concerning for tier. according to sonoma county officials will have been 600 reports of missing people in the wake of those wildfires. 285 of those people are still missing. now, if you need to report someone as missing, you can call this number right here on your screen, it is 707-565-3856. this is sonoma county sheriff's deputies because they are investigating all missing person reports. it's not just fighting the flames, cal fire is looking into what started the fires. >> our investigative unit has been looking through fire dispatch records. liz wagner joins us with what
she found. >> reporter: we listened to dispatch recordings and found numerous reports of downed electrical equipment starting around 9:20 sunday evening. pg&e says it has reported those instances to regulators. now cal fire is taking a closer look as we are all starting to get a better idea of what led to this disaster. >> there is a registration fire. >> reporter: this was one of the first calls that came into sonoma county fire dispatchers sunday, 9:22 p.m. reports of a vegetation fire at buckingham drive in santa rosa. >> electrical investigation 47 maverick court. >> reporter: less than a minute later dispatchers note an electrical investigation on maverick court off mark west springs road. >> possible transformer explosion fulton road. >> reporter: a minute after that reports of a transformer explosion in santa rosa's larkfield neighborhood. records show during the next two hours dispatchers in sonoma sent crews to at least ten locations with blown transformers or downed power lines and recorded 14 instances of fallen trees and
in some cases trees into power lines. >> we need to find out what the cause of the fires were. >> reporter: state senator jerry hill has been critical of the way pg&e maintains its power equipment and trims trees around power lines. he spoke with us from overseas. >> the utility is supposed to make sure that the lines are he have is a, that the trees are safe and that there is no contact or potential for that. if this proves to be the case then we have some serious problems. >> reporter: cal fire doesn't know for certain if pg&e's electrical equipment plays a role but its investigators are fanned out across the region looking for causes including possible links to power lines. liz wagner, nbc bay area news. right now at 6:00, the fire, the fight intensifying. new evacuations ordered overnight:gt across the north b. this morning tier are desperately trying to get the upper hand as the winds pick up. and make no mistake, this is a serious critical catastrophic
event. >> entire towns left empty this morning as thousands flee the destructive wildfires, many grabbing only what they could carry. we have live team coverage across napa, sonoma and solano county with the fight still far from over. "today in the bay" continues right now. a very good morning to you. thanks for joining us, i'm laura garcia. >> and i'm marcus washington. you know, no matter where you are you will likely experience what this event has left behind as you walk behind the door. that smoke and ash billowing over the entire bay area. in sonoma county this is new video from overnight in geyserville as shifting winds add new urgency for firefighters desperately trying told who the line. headlines this half hour, mandatory evacuations have been ordered for a number of communities including residents in parts of geyserville and sonoma. the number of confirmed fire related deaths in northern california is now at 23,
including 13 in sonoma county. of more than 600 missing persons reported in sonoma county about half have been located. some 20,000 evacuees are in temporary shelters and at least 3,500 homes and businesses are destroyed. >> eight different fires in napa, sonoma and solano county are burning, more than 100,000 acres have been destroyed. take a look at this map, you can see how far the fire has expanded into three bay area counties. also, mandatory evacuations are now in effect nor parts of geyserville, calistoga, sonoma and santa rosa. we've got team coverage with our crews spread out across the bay area. let's start with "today in the bay's" sharon katsuda, she started in calistoga this morning and she's had to actually be on the move because of these fires. sharon. >> reporter: that's right, it's so active right now, laura. what you're seeing behind me is the atlas fire, it's