Rural, Rugged Terrain Challenges Firefighters in Loma Fire

Sep 28, 2016

Wednesday Afternoon Update

The Santa Cruz County Sheriff's Office has lifted some evacuation orders.  Residents in the following areas can return home.  Roads remain closed to non-resident traffic.

  • Rancho Prieta Road
  • Loma Prieta Way
  • Pacific Rim
  • Mt. Bachi Road
  • Summit Road
  • Haven Hill Land
  • Ormsby Cutoff/Trail


Wednesday Morning Update

The Loma Fire continued to grow overnight.  It's now 2,250 acres and 10% contained. The fire has destroyed one home and six outbuildings. It also has damaged a second home.  300 remain threatened.

The Santa Cruz County evacuation center has moved to the Santa Cruz County Fairgrounds in Watsonville.

CalFire Updates

Tuesday Update

The Loma Fire burning in the Santa Cruz Mountains continues to threaten 300 homes.  It grew to nearly 1100 acres overnight.  Firefighters have it 5% contained.  One structure has been destroyed.

The fire is burning on the Santa Clara County side of Loma Prieta Peak.  CalFire’s Brian Oliver says access is a big challenge.  “It’s rural, rugged and has lot of brush.  And given that it's not a developed area there aren’t roads to go in and work off of,” says Oliver.

Oliver says some firefighters are driving in as far as they can and then hiking the rest of the way.  They are getting air support from helicopters dropping water and airplanes that can release fire retardant.  Bulldozers and hand crews are also building containment lines.

Mandatory evacuation orders are in effect for the Loma Prieta ridge line area including all tributary roads along Summit Road from Soquel San Jose Road to Ormsby Fire Station.

This includes:

  • Uvas Canyon County Park
  • Loma Chiquita
  • Casa Loma
  • Loma Prieta Way
  • Highland Road
  • Mount Bache Road

Portions of Croy Road are under an evacuation warning.

Evacuation centers are set up at Soquel High School in Soquel, Soquel Jewish Community Center of Silicon Valley in Los Gatos and Morgan Hill Presbyterian Church in Morgan Hill.

The fire started around 2:45 Monday afternoon.  The cause remains under investigation.