Two people were found dead in a car in a driveway.
The McKinney Fire in northern California that started on the 29th has already scorched over 51,000 acres. Authorities have not contained any of it.
The fire is also inching towards Oregon. Gov. Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency.
Hot, windy, and dry weather continue to feed the fire. The clouds caused by the fire have produced their own weather, producing lightning strikes that start other fires:
There’s no single reason why the McKinney Fire was able to experience such explosive growth so quickly. Like we said before: Ongoing drought conditions have emptied reservoirs and created a bulild-up of dead ground vegetation, all in the presence of hotter-than-average temperatures and low humidity levels affecting much of Northern California.
Combine the McKinney Fire’s intensity with the difficult-to-access environment it’s burning in, and it’s no wonder why it’s being called a “very dangerous fire.”
“It’s a very dangerous fire — the geography there is steep and rugged, and this particular area hasn’t burned in a while,” said Tom Stokesberry, a spokesman with the U.S. Forest Service for the region.
The area also experienced “erratic lightning storms.” Adrienne Freeman, another spokesperson, said, “The fuel beds are so dry and they can just erupt from that lightning. These thunder cells come with gusty erratic winds that can blow fire in every direction.”
Almost 2,000 residents in Siskiyou County left their homes:
Larry Castle said he loaded up a trailer with some of his prized possessions, including his motorcycle and his rifles, and he, Nancy and three dogs headed to Mount Shasta to spend the night at their daughter’s house.
He was hopeful that recent brush and tree thinning projects foresters had conducted on the ridge-top above Yreka would save the town, but he wasn’t taking any chances.
“You look back at the Paradise fire and the Santa Rosa fire and you realize this stuff is very, very serious,” he said, referring to wildfires in 2017 and 2018 that burned thousands of homes and killed dozens of people.
Siskiyou County sheriff’s said two people were found dead in a car “in a residential driveway inside the McKinney Fire zone in Northern California.”
Authorities found at least 60 hikers on the Pacific Crest Trail. The hikers were not in danger, but the fire is unstable and could change anytime.
Oregon has alerted its citizens since the fire is only 10 miles south of the border. The state also has to worry about fires in Idaho and Montana.
Activity on both fires moderated into the evening as a smoke inversion settled over the fire. The fire became active again at about midnight. Crews were actively engaged in structure protection overnight. https://t.co/5KSqlQ0oC2 pic.twitter.com/RQ0xWcQYd3
— Klamath NF (@Klamath_NF) July 31, 2022
#RedFlagWarning remains in effect for Siskiyou County from 2 pm to 11pm for abundant lightning on dry fuels. This is #CriticalFireWeather so use caution outdoors. More tips: https://t.co/upBwccxXFO pic.twitter.com/2M6oRa24bz
— CAL FIRE (@CAL_FIRE) July 31, 2022
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