Officials also rescinded the evacuation warning for Pine Cove as of 11 a.m. today. Only local residents and business owners in these affected areas are allowed to repopulate. No visitors will be allowed into the area until after 11 p.m., the Sheriff's Department announced in a press release.
Fire Officials have determined the threat to the community from the 27,245-acre wildfire has been diminished due to increased containment and rainfall at the higher elevations. Firefighting personnel and equipment are still working in and around the affected areas and the mountain communities. Residents are encouraged to use caution while driving back into the area and resuming day-to-day activities, police and fire officials said.
According to the Sheriff's Department, Highway 243 will remain closed to the general public until 11 p.m. Residents with passes provided from an approved distribution center will be allowed access through this road closure.
The fire is now reported to be 49 percent contained following the efforts of thousands of firefighters on the ground and in the air with helicopters and tankers, such as the one shown in the above photo spreading flame retardant over the area (photo courtesy U.S. Forest Service).