One person was killed and 10 homes in Monterey County were destroyed by a new wildfire raging in Northern California. This comes a week after two other fires killed people and destroyed in excess of 1,400 homes.
The fire, which started Saturday afternoon, spread across 1,200 acres, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. It has only been 10-percent contained. As reported by USA Today, the victim who died in the fire has not been identified as yet. There have been three other deaths in this year’s fires.
Two other fires – Valley Fire and Butte Fire – have also caused widespread damage. Raging through Lake, Napa and Sonoma counties over the period of a week, the Valley Fire burned down 585 homes, destroyed hundreds of structures and damaged 70,000 acres of land, according to CNN. The Butte Fire, which burned for a period of 10 days, has killed two people and destroyed 511 residences and in excess of 330 outbuildings. The two casualties were a result of the victims choosing to stay indoors despite evacuation orders being put in place. “Our firefighters this week were forced to stop fighting the fire and went into rescue mode just trying to get people to evacuate,” CalFire spokesman, Daniel Berlant, said.
As of late Saturday, many of the other fires had been successfully 100 percent contained. The Valley Fire and Butte Fire had been 53 percent and 70 percent contained, respectively. California’s hot and dry weather is making it difficult to contain the fires, local authorities say. “A warming and drying trend is under way, and a light wind pattern will enhance the warm and dry conditions until Monday” in Northern California, CalFire said.
The most damaging fire, the 1991 Tunnel fire, caused mayhem through the populated hills above Oakland. Twenty five people perished in the fire and around 2,900 residences and apartment buildings were destroyed.
According to ABC.net.au, the estimate of damage caused in the fires since July 1 has been at least $244 million. Last year, the damage caused was worth $434 million, while in 2013 the same number stood at $240 million.
Several other fires are blazing through the state’s national forests and other federally operated lands. It has been one of America’s worst fire seasons. Last year, 3 million acres of land was damaged as a result of the fires; this year, the number has upped to a whopping 9 million acres of land.
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