California wildfires: map of areas affected by McKinney Fire, Oak Fire | NationalWorld

2022-07-31 11:04:31 By : Mr. Miles Tang

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Wildfires have ballooned in size in California due to adverse conditions

McKinney Fire and Oak Fire continue to cause havoc in California.

Wildfires in California ballooned in size overnight amid hot and windy conditions and were quickly encroaching on neighbourhoods, forcing evacuation orders for more than 100 homes on Saturday, while a blaze in Idaho was spreading.

In California’s Klamath National Forest, the fast-moving McKinney fire, which started on Friday, went from charring just over one square mile (1 sq km) to scorching as much as 62 square miles (160 sq km) by Saturday in a largely rural area near the Oregon state line, according to fire officials.

The fire burned down at least a dozen homes and wildlife was seen fleeing the area to avoid the flames.

It is the latest wildfire in one of the biggest states in the United States.

It is in Mariposa County, according to Cal Fire - the official government website.

The blaze has spread over 14,281 acres and is 0 per cent contained as of the latest update.

It erupted on Friday (22 July) south west of the park near the town of Midpines in Mariposa County.

“Today the weather is expected to remain hot with minimum humidity between 5 per cent and 10 per cent, which will hamper firefighting efforts,” a Sunday (24 July) morning incident report said.

Officials described “explosive fire behaviour” on Saturday (23 July) as flames made runs through bone-dry vegetation caused by the worst drought in decades.

By Sunday, the blaze had consumed more than 22 square miles of forest land, Cal Fire said.

The cause was under investigation.

Klamath National Forest spokeswoman Caroline Quintanilla said: “It’s continuing to grow with erratic winds and thunderstorms in the area and we’re in triple digit temperatures.”

California Governor Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency on Saturday as the fire intensified. The proclamation allows him more flexibility to make emergency response and recovery effort decisions and access federal aid.

It also allows “firefighting resources from other states to assist California crews in battling the fires”, according to a statement from the governor’s office.

Cal Fire’s website has a tracker of wildfires currently on-going in the state.

McKinney Fire is the biggest fire in California right now, but it is not the only one.

Oak Fire is also continuing, with Apple Fire and Highway Fire not yet fully contained.

Here is a screen shot of the map from Cal Fire’s website:

A significant build-up of vegetation was fuelling the McKinney fire, said Tom Stokesberry, regional spokesman for the US Forest Service.

“It’s a very dangerous fire – the geography there is steep and rugged, and this particular area hasn’t burned in a while,” he said.

A small fire was also burning nearby, outside the town of Seiad, he said.

With lightning predicted over the next few days, resources from all over California are being brought in to help fight the region’s fires, he added.

McKinney’s explosive growth forced crews to shift from trying to control the perimeter of the blaze to trying to protect homes and critical infrastructure like water tanks and power lines, and assist in evacuations in California’s northernmost county of Siskiyou.

Deputies and law enforcement officers were knocking on doors in the county seat of Yreka and the town of Fort Jones to urge residents to get out and safely evacuate their livestock on to trailers. Automated calls were being sent to land phone lines as well because there were areas without mobile phone service.

More than 100 homes were ordered to be evacuated and authorities were warning people to be on high alert. Smoke from the fire caused the closure of portions of Highway 96.