Creek Fire: Crews working to restore power, clean water to returning evacuees

Some residents are returning to unsafe water and no power, something teams are aggressively working to repair.
SHAVER SPRINGS, Calif. (KFSN) -- The Creek Fire, still ravaging portions of Fresno and Madera counties, has already destroyed more than 800 structures and continues to threaten thousands.

With crews working ahead of repopulation and re-entry efforts, the sounds of generators and infrastructure repair echo throughout the Creek Fire's path of destruction.

Merle Glenn doesn't plan to move back to his Shaver Springs home until power is restored and the water is safe for use.

Damage assessment teams continue to survey the damage.

They've identified more than 650 PG&E power poles that need to be replaced, but the job that can take anywhere from 2-3 hours is now taking 2-3 days per pole.

Hazardous air quality and steep terrain are only part of the challenges they face.

"We have 65 power poles that we're going to dig by hand," said PG&E spokesman Denny Boyles.

Boyles said more than 20,000 trees need to be removed.

"The damage of the fire extends beyond whether there's green left on it. Our certified arborists are looking at the root system, the bark, to see the damage," he said.

Boyles added most of the crews are either local or have spent time in the Shaver Lake area.

"We understand what that forest area means and were doing everything we can both to get those customers home and to make the roadways safe," he said.
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