Nuns fire shifts away from Bennett Valley

A fire blazes in Annadel State Park east of Annadel Heights.

Brandon McCapes, Deputy News Editor

Firefighters conducted a controlled burn along Skyline Dr. in Annadel Heights Wednesday, evening as winds, shifted to push the Nuns Fire northwestward and away from Bennett Valley homes.

Emergency personnel expected winds to continue driving the fire towards the Annadel Heights neighborhood this afternoon and took preventative measures by burning brush and watering properties that border Annadel State Park.

“It was like a mushroom cloud,” said Bennett Valley resident Luca De Lorenzis, 23. “The fire moved faster than any I’ve seen up the hills.”

A Santa Rosa Junior College fire academy graduate confirmed that the neighborhood is safe for the time being although it is still not contained.

“Now it’s going to be coming over the hill and they’re going to fight it from here,” said Annadel Heights resident Consuelo Henderson.

Helicopters and other aircraft conducted water drops on the park as part of an effort to halt the fire’s advance into the populated parts of Bennet Valley earlier today.

A fire still rages along Bennett Valley Rd. between Sonoma Mountain Rd. and Old Bennet Ridge Rd. and a new fire is spreading along Petaluma Hill Rd. south of Crane Canyon Rd. to Pressley Rd., according Cal-Fire.

The fire is still not contained, authorities say.


Additional reporting by Ali Benzerara and Albert Gregory.