3 homes destroyed in Guerneville blaze

Three downtown Guerneville homes were destroyed this weekend in a blaze that took fire crews at least two hours to contain, authorities said.

The fire started at 10:45 p.m. Saturday at a residence near the corner of Fifth and Church streets.

No one was injured, though two families were inside their residences when the blaze broke out, Monte Rio Fire Chief Steve Baxman said.

Two men in the home where the fire started were cooking at the time, Baxman said. However, he said, the cause of the fire still was under investigation.

The home was in the middle of a complex of three separate residences, Baxman said. The blaze quickly spread to a nearby home to the south where a man and a woman were living.

The fire then reached a separate residence to the north nearest to Fifth Street that was unoccupied at the time, Baxman said. The roof on that structure collapsed.

Fire crews from the Russian River, Monte Rio and Forestville fire departments battled the blaze, along with firefighters from Cal Fire, he said.

Crews were aided by favorable weather conditions - there was no wind at the time, Baxman said.

“If we would have some wind and embers, we would have had major issues,” Baxman said.

The three homes are located just to the south of a large multifamily apartment complex.

You can reach Staff Writer Bill Swindell at 707-521-5223 or On Twitter @BillSwindell.

Bill Swindell

Business, Beer and Wine, The Press Democrat  

In the North Coast, we are surrounded by hundreds of wineries along with some of the best breweries, cidermakers and distillers. These industries produce an abundance of drinks as well as good stories – and those are what I’m interested in writing. I also keep my eye on our growing cannabis industry and other agricultural crops, which have provided the backbone for our food-and-wine culture for generations.

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