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Monument Fire forces community of Junction City to evacuate

Junction City is under a mandatory evacuation order as the Monument Fire threatens the community.

Posted: Aug 9, 2021 6:31 PM
Updated: Aug 10, 2021 11:17 AM

JUNCTION CITY, Calif. – It was a quiet Monday afternoon in Junction City, as the Monument Fire forced people in the community to evacuate. The Junction City Store that was open a couple of days ago, now closed.

Several fire engines and crews have been passing through the community to get to where the flames are. Firefighters focused on protecting homes on Sunday night due to the lack of fire activity.

“Our firefighters are out there looking at where it could run and how they could stop the forward rate of spread in that area,” said Nathan Judy, the Public Information Officer for the Monument Fire. “But we have limited resources so we want to make sure we put our resources where we have those areas at risk.”

With the smoke still hanging in the air, firefighters are trying to get ahead of the flames before the temperature rises and activity picks up again.

But as firefighters continue to battle the fire, some community members who stayed behind are feeling on edge.

The Monument Fire forced Delvin Boughton to evacuate his home in Big Bar. He came to his friend’s place in Junction City.

RELATED: Monument Fire grows to nearly 58,000 acres

“I'm here to help my friends,” said Boughton. “It's horrid when you don't have anybody helping you and nobody comes around cause they're all doing their own thing.”

The friends now prepping to make sure the home and property are safe. Both told Action News Now they got very little sleep the night before.

“You can imagine how we’re just frothing,” said Boughton. “Just trying to get watered up with sprinklers and stuff around the barn, shed, and house.”

But it's not just the smoke that's in the air. It's also stress and nervousness. Brian Colvard grew up in Junction City but now lives in Redding. When he heard about the evacuations, he rushed over.

“I've got a lot of friends and family here,” said Colvard. “I rushed over here to help my aunt and uncle first. Then it turned into helping my best friend as well.”

Colvard said if the flames come close, he will stay and help his friend protect his home

“If it comes to it and we see flames, my buddy's wife and kids will evacuate and make a run for it,” said Colvard. “But the river's right next door, if it comes to it, we can go in the river.”

Two evacuation shelters were set up for people impacted by the fire. One is located in Redding at Shasta College. The other shelter is located in Blue Lake in Humboldt County at the Mad River Grange.

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We've had a gray and cool start to the first full week of December in northern California. Light rain showers will fall tonight, we can expect a breezy and brighter Tuesday, with much more active weather ahead.
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