For current evacuation information, click here.

Update - Sept. 4 @ 7 a.m.:

Firefighters have reached 100% containment on the Airola Fire, Cal Fire TCU reported.

Update - Sept. 1 @ 7 a.m.:

Cal Fire TCU reported that the Airola Fire is 639 acres with 87% containment.

"Suppression repair efforts, fire line reinforcement, mop-up and patrol will continue," Cal Fire TCU reported. "Cooler high temperatures are expected today and tomorrow. A slight increase in relative humidity and west winds will continue but with decreased strength."

Two engines and three hand crews remain on the fire. The estimated full containment date of the incident is Sept. 5.

Update - Aug. 29 @ 7 a.m.

The Airola Fire is 65% contained and expected to be fully-contained by Sept. 1, a morning update from Cal Fire stated. 

A cause of the fire remains under investigation. 

Update - Aug. 27 @ 9 p.m.

An end-of-day report from Cal Fire stated that the Airola Fire in Vallecito is holding at 700 acres and is now 50% contained. 

No structure damage, injuries or fatalities have been reported. 

"Firefighters worked tirelessly today towards increased containment and will continue to strengthen containment lines, conduct mop-up operations and patrol," the report reads. 

Update - Aug. 27 @ 7 a.m.:

The Airola Fire remains at 700 acres with 35% containment. A total of 200 structures are still considered threatened, with no structures reported damaged or destroyed. In Vallecito, evacuation warnings remain in effect for all of Parrotts Ferry Road from the Tuolumne/Calaveras County line to Highway 4, including Moaning Cavern and Camp Nine road areas and east of Red Hill Road to Parrotts Ferry Road. Evacuation warnings also remain in effect for the towns of Murphys and Douglas Flat.

All evacuation orders were lifted Thursday evening, and Parrotts Ferry Road was reopened.

"Fire line construction and strengthening will continue today," Cal Fire TCU reported. "Where containment lines are established firefighters will patrol and mop-up hot spots. Steep and rocky terrain with difficult access for equipment in the Stanislaus River Canyon continues to challenge firefighters. Warming temperatures with lowering humidity are expected today into the weekend. Wind will generally be upslope during the day, turning downslope at night. Locally gusty west wind is possible this afternoon."

Personnel assigned to the fire total 345, with resources including 34 engines, seven water tenders, two helicopters, 13 hand crews and 10 dozers.

Update: Aug. 26 @ 6:45 p.m.:

Evacuation orders for the Airola Fire in Vallecito will be downgraded to a warning at 8 p.m. this evening as containment of the blaze has reached 25%.

The fire has remained at 700 acres since Wednesday afternoon, when evacuation orders were issued for much of the Vallecito area. 

Officials say Parrotts Ferry Road from Highway 4 to the southern county line will reopen at 8 p.m. this evening. Power has also been re-established in the Parrotts Ferry area. 

"As the public begins to repopulate, please remain vigilant and watch for fire crews and utility resources on roadways," the Calaveras County Office of Emergency Services stated. 

Update: Aug. 26 @ 3:34 p.m.:

The Calaveras County Office of Emergency Services (OES) has activated an Emergency Operations Center (EOC) for the Airola Fire.

So far, the Calaveras Alert system has sent notifications to 693 contacts, and of those contacts, 305 have confirmed receiving the message. Approximately 80 residents are in the mandatory evacuation area, the OES stated. 

To enroll in Calaveras Alert, click here

"In addition, Calaveras OES have been in contact with Utica Water and CCWD regarding critical water infrastructure potentially threatened by this incident, and continue to partner to ensure the critical  infrastructure is protected. We have also been in contact with PG&E, who has assigned a representative to our  EOC. Current partners at the EOC also include the Calaveras County Office of Education, American Red Cross, the Sheriff’s Office, and CalOES," an OES press release states. 

Update: Aug. 26 @ 7 a.m.:

Cal Fire Tuolumne-Calaveras Unit (TCU) reported that the fire is 700 acres in size with 10% containment.

"Firefighters observed extreme fire behavior yesterday afternoon as the fire made uphill runs and is terrain driven," Cal Fire TCU reported. "Critically dry fuels and steep terrain challenged fire crews overnight. Firefighters will continue to establish direct and indirect containment lines today. Hotter and drier temperatures are forecasted today through the weekend with poor humidity recovery overnight."

A total of 345 personnel are assigned to the fire, with resources including 34 engines, seven water tenders, two helicopters, 13 hand crews and 10 dozers.

While no structures have been confirmed damaged or destroyed, 200 structures are still considered threatened.

Evacuation orders and advisories remain in effect.

All schools in Vallecito Union School District are closed today, according to the Calaveras County Office of Education.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Update - Aug. 25 @ 8 p.m.:

The Calaveras County Sheriff's Office reported that the fire is estimated at between 700 and 1,000 acres with 0% containment. Parrotts Ferry Road is expected to remain closed throughout the night, and Highway 4 remains open. Michelson Elementary School and Vallecito Transition School will be closed Thursday. The sheriff's office will continue to patrol evacuated areas throughout the night.

Update - Aug. 25 @ 6:22 p.m.:

The Calaveras County Office of Emergency Services reported that, "The fire is currently 1,000 acres and progressing northeast. The fire appears to be heading in direction of Stanislaus river canyon."

Original article:

A vegetation fire off of Parrotts Ferry Road in Vallecito has quickly grown in size.

The Airola Fire began at around 3 p.m. north of Parrotts Ferry Bridge near Airola Road and has already grown to 700 acres, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.

One helicopter, one air-attack, two tankers, several overhead, nine engines, two hand crews, one dozer and three water tenders are currently battling the fire.

Parrotts Ferry Road has been closed from its intersection with Highway 4 to its intersection with Porcina Way in Tuolumne County.

Evacuation orders are in effect in Vallecito for "all of Parrots Ferry Road from the Tuolumne/Calaveras county line at Parrots Ferry Bridge to Highway 4 including Moaning Cavern and Camp Nine road areas as well as east of Red Hill Road to Parrots Ferry Road," according to the Calaveras County Sheriff's Office.

Douglas Flat and Murphys are under evacuation warnings.

Evacuation centers have been set up at Mark Twain Elementary School in Angels Camp and Independence Hall in Arnold.

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Reporter

Noah Berner has lived in Calaveras County most of his life, and graduated from University of California, Santa Cruz with a degree in history.

Dakota graduated from Bret Harte in 2013 and went to Davidson College, NC where she earned a bachelor's degree in Arab studies. After spending time studying in the Middle East and Europe, she is happy to be home, writing about the community she loves.

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