Humboldt County estimates 150 red-tagged homes, but most power restored

The Humboldt County Sheriff William Honsal and the Office of Emergency Services manager Ryan Derby provided some details on the state of emergency following Tuesday morning’s 6.4 earthquake to the board of supervisors in a special meeting Thursday afternoon. The Tuesday meeting was canceled in the hours after the massive jolt.

“The goal here that early on in these events is trying to figure out the needs of the communities that are affected the most,” Honsal said. “Our No. 1 need and our priority is our people. … We are going to continue to do everything possible to make sure they are housed, that they are fed, that they have water and all those essential things that they need in the communities that are most affected.”

Derby noted the county is coordinating with the various cities on damage estimates.

“We are working on initial damage estimates with the various cities trying to get some rough estimate of all the damage that has occurred, basically separating it out into different buckets,” Derby noted. “So we can financially track and submit that report to the state and hopefully get us back to some semblance of stability here in the coming days or weeks.”

He added that power was almost entirely restored, according to Pacific Gas and Electric Co.

“Power restoration has been extremely successful,” he said. “We now have less than 10 customers throughout the county that remain without power.”

The Humboldt County Board of Supervisors was asked to ratify the declaration of an emergency in the county and voted unanimously to allow it, a move that opens up the opportunity for funding for recovery.

Honsal noted that 1st District Supervisor Rex Bohn and 2nd District Supervisor Michelle Bushnell had the most constituents affected by the magnitude-6.4 quake.

Rex said the number of red-tagged homes is increasing in the county and said he spoke with North Coast representatives.

“I got the trifecta today. I got (Jim) Wood, (Jared) Huffman and (Mike) McGuire asking what they can do and I said, ‘Just send us money without a bunch of strings and let us fix the houses. … Don’t put a lot of restrictions on it. And don’t pound us with paperwork.’ … We’re going to have 150 houses probably red tagged, I say minimum, and I think I think we can fix that real quick because we’re Humboldt and we do that.”

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