California governor declares emergency over wildfire near Yosemite

CALIFORNIA: Fast Movement bush close fire Yosemite The National Park exploded in size on Saturday into one of the CaliforniaThe biggest wildfire of the year, forcing thousands of people to evacuate and cut power to more than 2,000 homes and businesses.
The Oak Fire started Friday afternoon southwest of the park near the town of Midpines in Mariposa County and by Saturday had grown to nearly 19 square miles (48 square kilometers), according to the Forestry and Fire Department. California, aka Cal Fire.
It broke out as firefighters made progress against a blaze that had previously burned at the edge of a giant grove of trees in the southernmost part of Yosemite Park.
Daniel said the evacuation order went into effect Saturday for more than 6,000 people living on a stretch of several miles in a sparsely populated, rural area. Pattersona spokesman for the Sierra National Forest.
Governor Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency for Mariposa County Saturday due to the effects of the Oak Fire.
More than 400 firefighters are battling the blaze, along with helicopters, other aircraft and bulldozers, facing extreme conditions including hot weather, low humidity and arid vegetation that causes damage. caused by the worst drought in decades, Patterson said.
“Explosive behavior is challenging firefighters,” Cal Fire said in a statement Saturday, describing the Oak Fire’s operation as “extreme with frequent runs, spot fires and burning fires. group fire.”
By Saturday morning, the fire had destroyed 10 residential and commercial structures, damaged five others and was threatening another 2,000 structures, Cal Fire said. The fire closed many roads, including the closure of Highway 140 between Carstens Road and Allred Road – blocking one of the main routes into Yosemite.
California has experienced larger and more severe wildfires in recent years as climate change has made the West much warmer and drier over the past 30 years. The weather will continue to get more extreme and wildfires more frequent, destructive and unpredictable, scientists say.
“The fire is moving quickly,” Patterson said. “This fire threw embers up to 2 miles forward yesterday,” Patterson said. “These are exceptional fire conditions.” The cause of the fire is under investigation.
Pacific Gas & Electric said on its website that more than 2,600 homes and businesses in the area were without power as of Friday afternoon and there was no indication when it would be restored. “PG&E was unable to access the affected device,” the utility said.
An elderly man without shoes trying to flee the blaze Friday crashed his sedan into a ditch in an enclosed area and was helped by firefighters. He was safely driven from the area and does not appear to have suffered any injuries. Several other residents were in their homes Friday night when the fire broke out nearby.
Meanwhile, firefighters have made significant progress in fighting a wildfire that started in Yosemite National Park and consumed the Sierra National Forest.
The Washburn The fire was 79% contained on Friday after burning about 7.5 square miles (19.4 square kilometers) of forest. It is one of the largest fires of the year in California, along with the Lost Lake Fire in Riverside County, which was completely extinguished in June with an area of ​​9 square miles (23 square kilometers).
The fire broke out on July 7 and forced the closure of Yosemite’s south entrance and the evacuation of Wawona’s community when it burned at the edge of Mariposa Grove, home to hundreds of giant sequoias, the world’s largest trees. sex by volume.
Wawona Street Scheduled to reopen on Saturday, according to the park’s website.

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