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No rest | Firefighters continue to battle the Valley Fire for a 5th day

Firefighter crews tirelessly battle the Valley Fire in Japatul Valley around the clock with little opportunity to rest.

As the crews continued their around-the-clock fight with the Valley Fire in Japatul Valley on Wednesday, there is some good news. Santa Ana winds have tapered off and there are currently no huge flames to report.

For the most part, crews are in mop-up mode Wednesday, working to keep the embers from rekindling, which is still a very long and hard task.

There are nearly 700 firefighters from all over the western U.S. helping to contain the Valley Fire.

"We have firefighters from Texas, Utah... engines and equipment from all over California," said Thomas Shoots, a captain with CalFire.

Crews have been battling the blaze from the air and on the ground nonstop since Saturday.

"It's no easy feat. We're going be out here for the next week or plus monitoring it. It's hot, rugged. We continue to look out for each other," said Shoots.

So far, the offshore Santa Ana winds were not as bad as expected, but the risk of wind gusts flaring flames up again has not been ruled out and will continue to be a threat until the fire is 100% contained. 

"The winds are still gusty out on the fire line but things are looking a lot better for us and we hope to continue making progress without this fire getting much bigger," said Shoots.

Evacuation orders are still in effect for certain communities. Firefighters warn the local residents that were evacuated not to return home yet even though the nearly 18,000-acre wildfire did not grow much overnight and containment increased to 11%. 

"There are not a lot of roads out there. It is still not safe to go back as we are trying to cool the fire and we don't [want] people to go back home just to [have them] evacuate at a moment's notice," said Shoots.

Sadly, 20 homes and 26 structures have already been destroyed. Two firefighters have been injured while fighting the blaze.

Firefighter fatigue is understandable during these difficult times, but all are getting rest, wherever and whenever, they can. Even just a few minutes of rest in the shade of a tree, in a truck, or on a table can help.

"Many of these firefighters were up north just a few weeks ago. A lot have been working over a month straight, not seeing their family and trying to do the best for these communities," added Shoots.  

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