Wildfires rage in California as heat wave lingers across U.S. West


According to CALFIRE, the Creek Fire remains 0% contained as of Monday evening.

The last time the number of acres burned got close to two million was in 2018, the same year as the devastating Camp Fire, when a little more than 1.9 million acres (769,000 hectares) went up in flames.

Residents are being told that they may evacuate to Yucaipa Community Center as a temporary evacuation facility.

They came as overstretched firefighters were finally gaining ground on numerous lightning-caused fires in Northern California which ignited last month. The cause had not been determined.

U.S. Navy and California Army National Guard helicopters rescued about 100 people overnight trapped by the Creek Fire and brought them to safety in Fresno, officials reported.

Creek Fire in Fresno County and Madera County has charred 73,278 acres, and threatens more communities as well as recreation areas like Shaver and Bass lakes, and Yosemite National Park.

The fire started on Saturday at 10:23am, they said, and 527 people from 10 fire crews are now trying to halt the fire's progress.

The injured, along with women and children, took priority on the first airlift, which filled both helicopters to capacity, he said. He was sentenced to probation for triggering the fire, which caused more than US$8 million in damage. "We know how it started because they were still there".

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The employment rate for men also stood at 96.6 per cent of its pre-pandemic rate, one per cent higher compared to that for women. Gains in August were largely concentrated in full-time work, which had been lagging behind gains in part-time employment.

Rosamond called the conditions "extreme" and said it was one of the most hard flying missions in his 25 years as a military pilot.

Pacific Gas and Electric said late Monday it had begun turning off power in high fire-threat areas, affecting 172,000 customers in 22 counties with the expectation that the shutoff will last through Wednesday morning.

The California Independent Systems Operator, which runs most of the state's power grid, again urged consumers to cut back on energy consumption and said it was monitoring wildfires throughout the state threatening power lines.

Local officials say a pyrotechnic device used to release blue or pink smoke to announce the gender of an expected baby sparked the blaze, which at the moment of writing has burned 7,050 acres of land in southern California.

California has been baking under scorching conditions with temperatures reaching a record 121 degrees Fahrenheit (49 Celsius) on Sunday in Woodland Hills, an all-time high for Los Angeles county, the National Weather Service said.

In Southern California, crews scrambled to douse several fires that roared to life in searing temperatures, including one that closed mountain roads in Angeles National Forest and forced the evacuation of the historic Mount Wilson Observatory.

The fire spread quickly from that part toward the town, and resulted in evacuations of residents in its path. The western state of the USA has had 900 wildfires since August 15, caused mainly by lightning strikes. Small communities have been evacuated in the face of the fire's advance, with many buildings destroyed as military helicopters arrived to rescue scores of people from harm's way.