38,000 under evacuation as California wildfire spreads

Carla Bledsoe facing camera hugs her sister Sherry outside of the sheriff's office after hearing news that Sherri's children James 4 and Emily 5 and grandmother were killed in a wildfire Saturday

Burned vehicles are seen in front of a wildfire-ravaged home, Sunday, July 29, 2018, in Redding, California. Firefighters and utility fix crews drove up and down the once-scenic highway, while California Department of Transportation water trucks sprayed roadsides in hopes of preventing potential wildfires from burning across the road, which can cost several million dollars to fix.

Firefighters on Friday were able to minimize any additional growth of the Carr Fire into Redding but the fire spread significantly on the north and sides.

Nationally, 89 active large fires have consumed almost 930,000 acres (376,000 hectares) in 14 states, according to the National Interagency Fire Center. He was treated at the scene but died before he could be taken to a hospital.

Hughes had worked with the Arrowhead hotshots for four years.

It is one of eight major wildfires now burning in the state.

As of Sunday morning, the fire had consumed more than 89,000 acres and was only 5 percent contained.

"Over the years, we're putting more people in harm's way", he said.

"Everyone we come into contact [with] in those neighborhoods, if they don't have a legitimate reason to be there, if we don't arrest them for looting, they'll be arrested for something else", he said. "But these are impacting communities - and they're large fires, not small".

About 12,000 firefighters have responded to the wildfires from within California. National Guard troops also were called in to assist at roadblocks. "There's a finite number of resources in California, and obviously we're employing them at the highest-priority incidents", Cox said.

The Carr Fire, which is the largest of 17 wildfires burning in California, has destroyed or damaged more than 1,000 structures in Shasta and Trinity Counties, about 150 miles north of Sacramento.

Two young children and their great-grandmother are the latest victims of a massive and fast-moving wildfire in Shasta County that officials acknowledged Saturday they were making little progress in controlling. Two belonged to the crews fighting the fire. "I've been a lifelong resident of this community".

"I didn't know if the fire was just going to jump out behind a bush and grab me and suck me in", Williams said.

CORRECTS SPELLING TO SHERRY NOT SHERRI-Sherry Bledsoe left cries next to her sister Carla outside of the sheriff's office after hearing news that Sherry's children James and Emily and grandmother Melody Bledsoe were killed in a wildfire
2 Children, Great-grandmother Die in California Wildfire

While her parents grabbed photos and corralled their dogs, the 16-year-old scooped up her phone, an outfit and a new pair of sneakers she bought while back-to-school shopping.

Mike Mangas, a spokesman at Mercy Medical Center, said the hospital was evacuating five babies in its neonatal intensive care unit, which cares for premature newborns, and taking them to medical facilities outside of the area.

"It's just unbelievable knowing you don't have a house to go to", said Anna Noland, whose home was destroyed in the blaze.

The fire around Redding was among 17 significant blazes in the state on Sunday that had forced roughly 50,000 people from their homes, said Lynne Tolmachoff, a Cal Fire spokesperson.

"We are well ahead of the fire activity we saw previous year", she said. The two fires had blackened 39 square miles (101 square kilometers) and were each 5 percent contained.

"We've had no movement on the fire over the last day inside the city limits, so things are looking very good", he added.

The weather on Sunday is expected to offer no relief for firefighters as it will hit more than 100 Fahrenheit (37.7 Celsius) with low humidity and gusty winds, the National Weather Service said. "There's a lot of fire, a lot of structures burning". We don't want people in neighborhoods.

Shasta County Sheriff Tom Bosenko said a sixth person died as a result of the Carr Fire, during an afternoon press conference.

He said the hospital was preparing high-risk patients to be evacuated but there were no immediate plans to do so.

Another northern California fire, the Mendocino Complex - made up of two fires - has also burned more than 24,000 acres in total since Friday.

Some evacuations were lifted but officials said Yosemite Valley, the heart of tourism in the park, will remain closed until August 3.

The fire has destroyed 500 structures. Authorities have cleared nine of those cases and are continuing to investigate seven others, he said.

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