As wildfire warnings escalated Sunday, Napa Valley resident Amy Bordeau grabbed the same bag she’d packed for an earlier evacuation, KPIX reported.
“It’s a bit traumatizing,” said Bordeau, who lives in Calistoga, according to the station. “I feel like I’m constantly fight or flight.”
The Glass Fire, which has already blackened 11,000 acres, threatens Santa Rosa and the Napa Valley, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection reported. Thousands have already been forced to evacuate from the blaze, formed by a merger of three wildfires.
The deadly Tubbs Fire in 2017 devastated both Santa Rosa and the Napa Valley. The fire burned 37,000 acres and 5,600 homes, killing 22 people, Cal Fire reported.
“I’m sort of numb at the moment,” said Sonoma County Supervisor Susan Gorin, reported The San Francisco Chronicle. Gorin evacuated her Oakmont home east of Santa Rosa.
“It seems surreal to me that we would be facing this again in some of the same areas that lost so many homes so traumatically just three short years ago,” Gorin said, according to the publication. “It’s like God has no sympathy, no empathy for Sonoma County.”
A series of lightning-sparked fires in August and September also threatened the region.
“It gets tiring, it’s becoming a lifestyle, it’s a beautiful place but it’s not right,” said evacuee Magaly Otero, KGO reported.
The seemingly endless rounds of warnings, evacuations, choking smoke and uncertainty has worn some residents down.
“It is what it is,” said Patrick Ryan of Oakmont, east of Santa Rosa, The San Francisco Chronicle reported. “This is how we live in California now. It’s the charcoal state, not the sunshine state anymore.”
“We’ve come to the point that if it burns down, oh well,” said Lorraine Fuentez of Calistoga, according to the publication. “It feels overwhelming. It feels like, is this ever going to end?”
Jan Zakin had to flee her home near Calistoga with nothing, KGO reported.
“We woke up in the middle of the night and saw flames,” Zakin said, according to the station. “I was in my underwear, there was a car on fire blocking access out, my dog ran away, I still haven’t found her. We left with nothing, just literally with nothing. We’re so lucky to be alive.”
Her dog, Zsa Zsa, was later found badly burned, KGO reported.
The fires are rattling even those who left the area after living through previous wildfires.
“Anyone else feel weird over being away from the fires but still feeling triggered af over them like I don’t even live in Santa Rosa anymore so I shouldn’t be worried,” wrote one survivor on Twitter.
“Napa Valley is on fire again,” wrote another resident on Twitter. “Parts of Santa Rosa, a city of 115k, are likely to be evacuated in the coming hours. It’s never ending.”