COLFAX (CBS13) – People forced out of their homes by the River Fire in Nevada and Placer counties were able to return Monday to see what was left.

It’s work Josh Raiger and his dad, Eddie, are, in a way, thankful for. The father and son were pressure washing fire retardant off their property Monday.

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Their family’s second home survived the River Fire as flames got to the backside of the property.

“It’s almost like there was a bubble that protected it in a way,” Josh said.

Josh says the devastation that now surrounds them is shocking.

“It was quite the mess. As we drove up there were a lot of burned homes just right below us…and surprising just at the top…another one above us,” he said.

As evacuees are let back into their properties to assess the damage, Eddie Raiger prepares to open his home that survived to people who may need it.

He is grateful his home was protected.

“Since this is a second home…I lucked out and feel pretty darn lucky that if any of my neighbors need to rebuild their home, I’ll just lease it to them while it’s done,” he said.

For now, he and his son will continue getting their property back to the way it looked before.

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“That’s OK, you know, better than not having a house, right?” he said.

Re-entry is being carried out in the Rood Center at 950 Maidu Avenue in Nevada City, on the 2nd floor, Tuesday through Friday 8 am to 5 pm. Residents are asked to bring an ID to confirm residency.

Placer County also issued this statement about re-entry:

EXTENSION OF RE-ENTRY CENTER IN PLACER COUNTY

Residents with passes within the fire perimeter were allowed back into the evacuated areas at 1 pm today.

A re-entry center for people within the mandatory evacuation will close today at 5 pm and re-open from 9-noon tomorrow, Tuesday, Aug. 10th.

The re-entry center will be located at Colfax Elementary School, 24825 Ben Taylor Rd, Colfax. Please bring an ID to confirm residency. At the center, we’ll provide a pass that will allow free movement to your residence; respirator masks for safety; and information around other safety precautions for return if a home has suffered damage.

The evacuated area will be open to residents only. For those who may be unable to return quickly but are seeking information around the status of their property, please call 211 and leave your address and contact information. A representative from the county will then follow up within a few hours. A local assistance center is expected to open later in the week providing a one-stop-shop for recovery information and resources including insurance, rebuilding, utilities, social services and more. Please continue to follow this page for updates on the location and hours.

Fire personnel are still active in both Placer and Nevada counties. Please reduce speeds and drive with caution. For additional information on returning home after a wildfire, go to:

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http://calfire.ca.gov/communications/downloads/fact_sheets/PGE_ReturningHomeAfter