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Snow Fire evacuation order lifted, residents grateful for saved homes

snow fire 9-18

On Saturday night CalFire Riverside County lifted the evacuation order for the Snow Creek Village community at the base of the San Jacinto Mountains in unincorporated Palm Springs. Residents were told to leave on Thursday after a fire sparked in the nearby brush when a vehicle pulled to the side of Snow Creek Road while it was on fire.

"Very good success over the last few days especially yesterday. What you see is just a lot of hotspots, they’re burning at the lower end of the canyon, we do have some hand crews there and some engine companies back in there. They’re working, they’re letting some of the stuff burn out just so we have a nice clear area," said Capt. Fernando Herrera, Riverside County Fire Department and CalFire.

As of Saturday night the fire scorched 6,013 acres and reached 15% containment.

Firefighters aggressively fought off the fire overnight on Thursday as it crept up to homes in the community at the base of the mountains.

"We reached down and we were able to do outstanding structure defense. No homes were damaged or destroyed and so far no injuries for civilians or firefighters," said Capt. Herrera.

Many residents left the first day, while others stayed behind.

"The way they fought it, it was surreal. They did a great job," said Whitewater resident, Pete Wright.

Wright stayed behind and captured the moment crews arrived on scene to battle the blaze.

Courtesy: Pete Wright

"If they weren’t here, we wouldn’t have had any houses. If they wouldn’t have fought that hard-- the fire came down, over the mountain, came on the other side, blew back into the village and actually the fire department, at 4:30 in the morning, put it out," said Wright.

As of Saturday night, and evacuation warning remained in place for residents in Windy Point.

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Shelby Nelson

Shelby Nelson is a News Reporter for KESQ News Channel 3. She joined our team in September 2019 after living in San Francisco for 6 years. Learn more about Shelby here.

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