Men Arrested For Refusing To Evacuate Ranch Fire, Water Marijuana Plants Instead

Rising winds forecast for Northern California wildfire zones

Access to Yosemite Valley is closed through Sunday due to fire operations, the NPS said.

"Tragedies bring people together", he added.

Yosemite Valley residents must leave the valley by noon Friday, National Park Service officials said. The apprentice lineman was working to restore power in the area.

California fire officials said Saturday that the Ranch and River fires of the Mendocino Complex, burning near Ukiah and Clear Lake, grew to nearly a combined 250 square miles (201,000 acres).

The scorched land figure is expected to rise when the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire) issues an update on Saturday night, spokeswoman Tricia Austin said. In all, they have destroyed hundreds of homes, killed eight people - including four firefighters - and shut down Yosemite National Park.

"This is a particularly risky situation with extremely low humidity and high winds".

Despite the outlook, strong gusts along the upper ridge lines were a concern on the fire's rugged western flanks, a few miles from the town of Lewiston, which remained evacuated. The largest of the two fires was 50 percent contained.

It killed two people, including a firefighter, and destroyed more than 1,000 buildings before being fully contained on January 12. A total of 450,000 acres have burned, majority being consumed by the Carr Fire and the Ranch and River Fires in Northern California.

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The Carr Fire was one of eight large wildfires burning in the state and 93 burning in the United States, mostly in the West, according to the National Interagency Fire Center.

More than 20,000 residents have been ordered to evacuate their homes as the fire tears through communities in Mendocino, Lake and Colusa counties.

The California Highway Patrol closed Highway 108 eastbound at Eagle Meadow Road and westbound at Dardanelle Resort on Saturday because of the fast-growing fire, which is burning in steep and rough terrain in the Stanislaus National Forest.

A firefighter walks around a swimming pool sprayed by phos-chek fire retardant after an air tanker made a pass while fighting a wildfire near Lakeport, Calif.

The declaration for Shasta County will increase residents' eligibility for programs and support in areas such as housing, employment and medical services and provide financial assistance to affected governments dealing with emergency response and recovery costs.

The Carr Fire spawned a "fire whirl" of flames and winds in excess of 143 miles per hour (230 kph) on July 26 that had the strength of a severe tornado and uprooted trees and toppled power lines, according to a tweet by the National Weather Service.

It burned so furiously on July 26 that it created what is called a fire whirl. What seems like we should be in the peak of fire season, historically, is really now the kind of conditions we're seeing really at the beginning, ' Pimlott said.

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