Incident Summary

The Crook Fire started on Thursday, May 23, 2019, around 1653 hours PDT due to a traffic accident that occurred on  I-5 northbound from the freeway 46 ramp at Exit 278 in Bakersfield, California.  The fire would eventually run from the TC into nearby brush turning it into a wildfire.


Originally here are the units that were dispatched to the call:

  • Crews 7 and 10
  • Dozers 1, 5 and 7
  • DO1
  • Engines 25, 26, 31, 24, 363 and 8531
  • H4407
  • Hall 3 and 5
  • KB 2 and 3
  • MV 1
  • Patrols 24, 25, 31, 33, 37,52 and 6567

The resource list then changed with an additional extra amount of resources:

  • Prev3
  • SF6
  • SUP40
  • Water Tenders 51 and 67

Current Status

Fire spread from the original MVA scene into grass on Highway 46, where the Fire Incident Command Post is located.  The fire quickly grew from a simple few acres to 100 and Fire Managers were expecting it to reach an all-time high of 2,000 acres with an unknown containment status.

Around 1811 hours PDT, the fire had destroyed 250 acres. Division Mike (east side of the fire) had been established with Copter 407 on-scene.  Prior to this update at 1739 hours, the IC (Incident Commander) had requested a wildland taskforce (four patrols and 1 Type – 3 Engine) plus an additional hand crew.

Shortly after resources were being deployed to this fire, another fire was reported by a reporting party (RP) that was approximately 100 x 200 in size with no resources assigned yet.  They reported the fire was heading towards Crew 10 that was already working on the main fire.

Firefighters found it difficult to access the other side of the fire through heavy brush which was undriveable and therefore they had to pull a long hose lay and go out on foot.  Several Dozers arrived on-scene and were being reassigned to Division MIke (eastside) and to the other side as fire was racing away.

Fire was said to be near Yellow Barrell which was off of Highway 46 and near Canal Road.  A report to Command stated the fire had jumped Canal Road, which was burning east of the ditch in a field.  It was heading  directly to the northeast and near a nearby orchard while Crew 10 was working nearby. This would put the fire just south of their area.

A weather update indicated the winds had increased from the west while thunderstorms from the north were heading their way.


The news media reported around 2025 hours PDT that the fire’s size increased to 450 acres. (2025 hours PDT) with an unknown containment status.

We will provide updates as information is received.

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(c) 2019 NW Fire Blog – 5/23/2019 @ 2111 hours PDT