|Benjie Batanes |||Aug 03, 2015 03:14 PM EDT|
(Photo : Getty Images/Justin Sullivan) More than 21,000 hectares or the equivalent of 54,000 acres of forest land near the town of Lower Lake has been burned by the fire. Thousands of firemen are currently battling at least 20 wildfires within the state of California.
The raging wildfire in the northern part of California has expanded to its biggest size yet on Sunday, destroying property and causing hundreds of Californians to abandon their homes.
Reuters reported that more than 21,000 hectares or the equivalent of 54,000 acres of forest land near the town of Lower Lake has been burned by the fire. Thousands of firemen are currently battling at least 20 wildfires within the state of California.
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However, the fire that started in Lake County on July 29, also known as the "Rocky Fire," presents the greatest threat. A spokesperson for the fire department admitted that the wildfire spread too quickly for them to contain it.
The spokesperson added that the fire consumed around 20,000 acres in the span of five hours in the evening of August 1. The following evening, the wildfire burned an additional 7,000 acres in the eastern part of Northern California.
On the last week of July, around 50 man-made structures were burned. This time, more than 6,000 buildings and homes are in peril from the wildfire. Authorities were also forced to shutdown portions of two of California's expressways.
Hundreds of local residents have been told that they may have to leave their homes to escape the oncoming wildfire. Firefighters are trying create a containment area for the blaze, but progress has been terribly slow.
More than 30 percent of the state's firefighters were assigned to contain the fire in Lake County as of Sunday.
Ken Pimlott, head of the firefighting operations, said that the fires were started by numerous lightning strikes that hit the state recently. The ongoing drought has also exacerbated the situation.
He admitted that they are undermanned and are already running out of supplies needed to battle the wildfires scattered all over California. Fortunately, help is on the way as other states and several federal agencies are lending a hand.
The wildfire has already claimed the life of a firefighter, David Ruhl. Reports indicate that he was killed on July 30 while battling the blaze near the Oregon border. That particular wildfire has destroyed almost 4,000 acres as of Sunday evening. Firefighters were unable to control the flames due to the winds that fanned it.
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