Detwiler Fire Scorches 45724 Acres, Destroys 8 Homes

20 July, 2017, 00:49 | Author: Alicia Barber
  • Evacuations canceled for North Fire in Happy Valley — currently, six acres burned

Nearly 5,000 people have been forced to evacuate from their homes as a fire spreads across Mariposa County, California.

The Detwiler Fire, which started Sunday near Lake McClure, has burned more than 45,000 acres and was 7% contained Wednesday morning, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said. One structure had already been destroyed and around 780 personnel from 22 fire crews were working against the blaze, the report said.

The raging blaze that forced thousands from their homes in Mariposa yesterday has continued to spread its wrath, almost doubling in size overnight to more than 45,700 acres, Cal Fire reported Wednesday morning.

Firefighters are facing "extreme and aggressive fire behavior" with solid walls of flame and sparks from the main blaze setting spot fires in grasslands, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire) said.

A wildfire burning in Central California doubled in size in just a few hours after it broke out in steep areas with heavy brush and tall grass.

In Nevada, firefighters got a handle on a wind-driven wildfire that destroyed four homes and damaged several more. Downtown Mariposa had its power cut off, according to one reporter on a Fox affiliate.

The Detwiler Fire continued to burn vigorously Tuesday evening.

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All of the shops in downtown Mariposa closed down, even the Best Western evacuated.

Around 4.4 million acres (1.8 million hectares) have been burned since the start of 2017, compared to 2.7 million acres (1.1 million hectares) in the same period a year ago, according to the website. The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Mother Lode Field Office is temporarily closing the Briceburg Visitor Center, along with McCabe Flat, Willow Placer, and Railroad Flat campgrounds along the Merced River due to the Detwiler Fire.

After stopping forward progress on what had become a rapidly spreading blaze Monday afternoon, Cal Fire was able to declare the 40-acre blaze 75 percent contained.

Californian Governor Jerry Brown issued a state of emergency in Mariposa County Tuesday as a wildfire continues to grow.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

Fire officials later located and seized the drone, he said.

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