Published: Sun, August 05, 2018
World News | By Sandy Lane

Air Tanker Deployed to Contain Devastating Mendocino Complex Wildfires

Air Tanker Deployed to Contain Devastating Mendocino Complex Wildfires

In the city of Redding, repopulation notices have been given to residents but for some there is nothing left but the charred remains of homes.

The family, who wore masks and spotted a sign warning of hazardous materials, received hugs and pats on the back from disaster relief volunteers who met them. "I see there's a few statuaries in the backyard that maybe we can save".

Forecasters said areas with the highest threat include the massive blaze near Redding and two fires burning next to each other around Clearlake about 100 miles (160 kilometers) north of San Francisco.

Caltrans says to drive with extra caution if you do take this route, as fire crews are still working in the area. Thousands of people remain evacuated.

The so-called Carr Fire was 41 percent contained after killing six people and incinerating 1,067 homes.

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Meanwhile, firefighters battling the deadly and destructive wildfires in the region faced worsening weather conditions.

As for the River Fire to the south, Blankenheim said firefighters "had really good progress" tying in containment lines in an effort to protect Scotts Valley and keep the fire from jumping Scotts Valley Road.

The National Weather Service has issued red flag warnings of extreme fire danger through Saturday night because of low humidity and gusty winds.

Some evacuations were lifted Friday in an area near Redding, where armies of firefighters and fleets of aircraft have been battling an huge blaze about 100 miles south of the OR line.

If it is considered a tornado, this destructive whirl would be the most powerful in California's history.

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Following years of drought and a summer of record-breaking heat, enormous tracts of forests, chaparral and grasslands have become tinder that allows even a small spark to explode into a devouring blaze, authorities said.

Gov. Jerry Brown at a press conference on August 1 warned that California may be in trouble if these mega fires continue to ravage the state.

To the southwest, new evacuations were ordered late Thursday at the Mendocino Complex, where the so-called Ranch and River fires have ravaged a combined 240 square miles (621 square kilometers), destroyed 41 residences and threatened 9,200 homes.

Two firefighters have been killed there since a fire erupted just west of Yosemite in the Sierra National Forest.

Officials Wednesday reported 10 homes have burned in the two fires but loss assessments still are being tallied.

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A 100-square-mile (259-square-kilometer) fire near Yosemite National Park prompted evacuation orders for the community of Wawona inside the park, which has fewer than 200 residents.

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