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California's summer siege of wildfires

In early July, firefighters were battling two large blazes in Northern California and forecasters were warning of record heat and gusty winds that could stir up more trouble. Then the Holiday fire hit Santa Barbara County, destroying homes and forcing evacuations. In the middle of the month, the Ferguson fire west of Yosemite National Park doubled in size in one night. Then came the Cranston fire south of Idyllwild and the deadly Carr fire in Redding. By the end of July, wildfires across the state had killed eight people and scorched 200,000 acres.

As August began, the Mendocino Complex fire north of San Francisco reached 283,000 acres in just 11 days, making it the largest recorded wildfire in modern California history. The Holy fire began Aug. 6 in Orange County and burned more than 22,000 acres through the Cleveland National Forest and into Riverside County.

Without warning: Redding fire moved faster than evacuation orders, leaving a deadly toll

California faces a huge challenge as fires get bigger, faster and increasingly destructive.

'Fire tornado' killed firefighter as he raced toward burning Redding neighborhood during Carr blaze

'Fire tornado' killed firefighter as he raced toward burning neighborhood in Redding.

All-out aerial assault helps firefighters save homes in Holy fire as containment grows

Tera Swick, 43, watched the large flames shoot up into the air from her mother’s front yard. She and her family cheered on the aircrafts that made fire retardant drops.

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Steve Lopez: Ignore the climate change deniers. California's hellish summer really is a grave warning

In the long, hot, smoky California summer of 2018, as we camp under ash-hued sunset skies, the scariest thought is that the future has arrived, and more intense weather extremes will continue to wreak havoc in years to come.

Firefighters gain upper hand on 22,700-acre Holy fire in Cleveland National Forest, as containment rises to 41%

The Holy fire stalks Lake Elsinore as firefighters struggle to get the upper hand.

A staggering death toll for firefighters in California's summer of flames

Deadly toll for firefighters during California firestorms

A squadron of planes and helicopters battles the destructive Holy fire, with signs of success

The firefight continued Friday morning, as more firefighters and aircraft poured into the area. Officials are expecting another hot day, with temperatures in the 90s. More than 20,000 residents were urged to leave their homes.

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Dwindling beer supplies, stalled businesses and missed county fair deadlines: California’s largest ever wildfire throws lives in limbo

Vignettes from a disaster: The copters hovering over Clear Lake like dragonflies, the people who defied evacuation orders who are running out of beer, the fishermen on the lake, the airplane repair business owner who has to close down because firefighters have taken over the tiny airport here.

'It feels like a war zone': Lake Elsinore residents fight to save homes as Holy fire rages

Forrest Gordon Clark, 51, was arrested on suspicion of two counts of felony arson, one count of felony threat to terrorize and one count of misdemeanor resisting arrest in connection with the ignition of the Holy fire.

New evacuations ordered for Lake Elsinore; Cal Fire mechanic dies near Carr fire

The mechanic’s death came as firefighters across the state continue to battle more than a dozen wildfires that have scorched more than 600,000 acres, bolstered by an extremely warm July and years of drought that have left underbrush ripe to burn.

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Trump's minions are using California wildfires as excuse to attack endangered species protections

Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross issued an order for the government to provide water that's unneeded for wildfires. Now the ulterior motive for President Trump's wildly uninformed tweet about what's causing California wildfires comes into focus.

  • Wildfires
A 'game changer' helps California firefighters pierce the haze and target hot spots

Firefighting technology in California took a big leap five years ago, when the Guard first used a large drone to fly over the Rim fire in San Diego County. Since then, the Guard’s 163rd Reconnaissance Wing has helped fight more than 20 wildland fires.

The Mendocino Complex is California's biggest fire ever, but residents know it could have been much worse

By Tuesday night, the complex had consumed more than 292,000 acres in 12 days and was 34% contained. Firefighters took advantage of cooler-than-expected temperatures to strengthen containment lines, slowing fire growth significantly.

California fire coverage: Eleven dead and hundreds of thousands of acres scorched across the state

Prolonged drought and extreme heat have made California ripe for dangerous fire conditions in recent months and years.

How Mendocino Complex became California's monster fire

The Mendocino Complex fire has burned its way into the history books as the biggest fire ever recorded in California.

Mendocino fire becomes biggest in modern California history as weary firefighters brace for more

Reaching 283,000 acres in just 11 days, the combination of the Ranch and River fires is now the largest recorded in California. As fatigue sets in for firefighters, the flames show few signs of letting up.

As Trump tweets about California fires, his administration wants to expand logging

President Trump's tweet calling for tree-clearing as a means of fire prevention isn't just idle words — his administration is planning to allow commercial logging of healthy green pine trees in a forest north of Los Angeles.

Mendocino Complex fire now largest in California history, capping destructive year

As residents whose homes were threatened by the deadly Carr Fire in Redding begin to return home, the Mendocino Complex Fire in Lake County grew again overnight to become the largest wildfire in California's history, officials said.

Firefighters battle 4,000-acre brush fire in Orange County amid extreme heat

The Holy fire was moving rapidly into the Cleveland National Forest, which straddles Orange and Riverside counties.

Devastating drone images show neighborhood hit by Shasta County fire

Dramatic drone images released Monday offered a grim record of the devastation in Shasta County, where the Carr fire destroyed more than 1,000 homes.

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In a strikingly ignorant tweet, Trump gets almost everything about California wildfires wrong

Trump's tweet about California fires shows he doesn't understand anything about the climate or water.

Closures at parts of Yosemite continue, reservations are canceled through Friday, lodging rep says

A large part of the park remains open. On the east side of the park, Tioga Road from Tioga Pass to White Wolf is open to visitors and vehicles.

Mendocino Complex fire racing at unprecedented speed into the record books

In a year of destructive fires, the Mendocino Complex fire might be in a league of its own. It's now the fourth largest California fire on record and could soon take the top spot.

Mendocino Complex climbs to fourth largest wildfire on record in California; 68 homes lost

The Mendocino Complex fire continues to grow, burning more than 266,000 acres by Sunday evening and becoming the fourth largest blaze in California history.

PG&E employee dies after accident tied to the Carr fire, company says

The death marks the seventh fatality tied to the Carr fire.

Mendocino Complex fire explodes to 229,000 acres, making it one of largest on record

The Mendocino Complex fire, as it's called, consists of two separate conflagrations that had consumed more than 200,000 acres by Saturday afternoon and had forced thousands of people to evacuate their homes.

Fire siege leaves Yosemite empty of humans, filled with smoke during peak summer season

For nearly three weeks, Yosemite has been besieged by fire. It's a summer without any crowds — the park is closed — but a lot of smoke and worry.

Red flag danger: Gusty weekend winds expected to fan deadly California fires

Firefighters are preparing for strong winds this weekend.

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In a conservative Northern California county, a team of Mexican immigrants helps battle the Carr fire

In Northern California, immigrant wildland firefighters are helping fight and contain the destructive Carr fire.

143-mph 'fire tornado' that cut a path of destruction is an ominous sign of the future

A tornado-like vortex spun as fast as 143 mph in Redding's catastrophic Carr fire. The exceptionally rare weather event may be an ominous sign of how extreme wildfires are getting in California's future.

Red flag conditions threaten to stoke large wildfires burning in Northern California

Firefighters throughout the state were bracing for an increase in strong winds that were forecast for this weekend and threatened to fan the flames of multiple Northern California wildfires, including the deadly Carr fire.

Evacuation orders can't keep up as fires get faster and hotter — with deadly results

The Redding fire is the latest example of an inferno moving so fast officials cannot evacuate in time. Three died in that blaze, adding to the dozens of lives lost in wine county. It's becoming clear the evacuation and warning systems need fixing.

California fires rage, and Gov. Jerry Brown offers grim view of fiery future

Firefighters continued Wednesday to gain containment on more than a dozen fires across the state and tried prevent new ones from growing amid hot, dry weather and harsh terrain, authorities said.

New fires threaten homes in Northern California's El Dorado County, taxing firefighter resources

New brush fires, including one threatening homes in El Dorado County, broke out Wednesday, further straining the efforts of overloaded firefighters who are trying to keep up.

A new normal for California: Destructive wildfires throughout the state

The Carr fire has become one of the most destructive wildfires in California history.

The common thread in California's wildfires: heat like the state has never seen

California is in the midst of the worst fire year ever — scores dead, more than 10,000 structures lost from San Diego to Redding. Each fire has its own story. But the one common denominator: Extreme heat the likes of which California has never seen before.

Lost colleagues, exhausting work and 'hotter than hell': On the front lines of the Redding fire

At least 3,600 firefighters from as far as Florida have gathered to combat a blaze that has already destroyed more than 800 homes and burned more than 110,000 acres near Redding.

Did you evacuate for a California wildfire? Tell us what you took with you

Californians are being forced to evacuate as wildfires burn around the state. If you’ve been asked to evacuate your home, we want to hear from you: What did you take with you, and why?

Four still missing in Redding and Old Shasta after destructive Carr fire

Authorities in Shasta County are looking for four people reported missing after the deadly Carr fire swept into neighborhoods and destroyed hundreds of homes.

Firefighters try to make progress on 17 fires that cut path of destruction

Authorities looked for more victims in Redding as firefighters tried to gain some ground from Shasta to Yosemite

Parts of Yosemite won't reopen as planned. Ferguson fire closures will remain through Sunday

Yosemite Valley, Wawona and even Hetch Hetchy are off limits to travelers because of poor air quality and the need to support firefighting operations.

What you need to know about the 15 wildfires across California

Fires burning across California have claimed at least eight lives and burned hundreds of homes.

Death toll mounts as wildfires rage across California

Eight fatalities have been reported from blazes burning in Shasta County and near Yosemite National Park. Firefighters are now battling 17 wildfires across the state, which have consumed more than 200,000 acres combined.

Arrowhead hotshot killed in Ferguson fire, raising death toll in wildfires across California to 8

A firefighter was killed Sunday morning battling the massive Ferguson fire near Yosemite, marking the second firefighting death in Mariposa County and eighth fire-related death in the wildfires raging across California.

At least 8 dead as wildfires continue to rage across California

Authorities on Monday were hoping that a slight break in the heat this week would help them gain control of a number of wildfires that have so far scorched more than 200,000 acres and killed eight people across California.

Cranston fire in Idyllwild 29% contained

Evacuations remained in place Saturday for 7,000 people, including residents and campers at Mount San Jacinto State Park.

Multiple fires across California stretch resources thin; Redding seeks more firefighters

Multiple fires across California stretch resources thin; Redding seeks more firefighters

Years of preparation helped prevent a fire disaster in Idyllwild

A 32-year-old man pleaded not guilty to 15 felony counts connected to a series of fires authorities say he set in Riverside County, including the Cranston wildfire that has burned 11,500 acres in the San Jacinto Mountains.

California's catastrophic year of wildfires worsens with Redding destruction

California’s grim year of fire destruction just got worse. The Times takes a look at why the last year has been so bad.

Firefighters capture video of 'fire whirl' during destructive Shasta County blaze

As firefighters continue to battle the destructive Carr fire, many have described — and captured on video — tornado-like flaming vortexes that have swept through the area.

500 structures lost in Northern California brush fire that kills 2

The Carr fire burning in Redding has grown to more than 48,000 acres and is only 5% contained. Two people — a firefighter and bulldozer operator — have been killed.

Redding on edge as Carr fire continues to grow

With more than 48,000 acres burned, Redding residents either decided to pack their belongings and head out of town along Interstate 5, which bisects the city, or nervously wait out the blaze, which is just 5% contained.

Man charged with starting 11,500-acre Cranston fire, eight others; Idyllwild authorities optimistic about blaze's containment

A 32-year-old man has been charged with starting nine separate fires, including a wildfire that has burned more than 11,500 acres in Idyllwild and forced the evacuation of thousands of residents

At least 2 dead, scores of homes lost as fire sweeps through Redding

A fast-moving wildfire burning in Shasta County jumped to nearly 45,000 acres Friday, destroying more than a dozen homes and threatening nearly hundreds more.

Redding police chief who lost his home helps neighbors evacuate amid 'fire tornado'

Redding Police Chief, who lost his home to Carr fire, describes a whirling tower of flames consuming his neighborhood

In Idyllwild, anxious residents keep a wary eye on the Cranston fire

The Cranston fire had burned more than 11,000 acres as of Friday morning and was 3% contained. Officials were still trying to assess how many homes had been lost.

'It's chaos out there': Residents flee Redding fire, not knowing whether their homes will survive

The Carr fire has destroyed or damaged more than 100 homes and killed at least two people, including a city firefighter.

Redding TV station reports devastating fire, then evacuates live on air as flames approach

The station went off the air, saying personnel had to evacuate the studio and building because of the fire danger.

5 homes destroyed and thousands evacuated in suspected arson near Idyllwild

Firefighters on Thursday morning continued their battle against a brush fire that exploded in the San Jacinto Mountains the previous afternoon, when it burned several homes and forced thousands of Idyllwild residents to flee, authorities said.

Scenes of destruction and salvation in path of raging Cranston fire

The wildfire has scorched 4,700 acres and is only 5% contained.

Firefighters begin new attack on massive Cranston fire: 'We’re throwing everything we can at it'

Authorities ordered hundreds of homes to evacuate in the mountain communities of Idyllwild, Apple Canyon, Lake Hemet, Mountain Center and Hurkey Creek while firefighters mounted an aggressive attack against the 4,700-acre Cranston fire.

Arson suspect arrested as fast-moving fire destroys structures, threatens hundreds more near Idyllwild

A brush fire erupted in Riverside County on Wednesday, prompting the evacuation of residents.

'This is what the future looks like': Heat wave stokes fears of power outages and fires

As the Southland endures another heat wave, utility officials are staffing extra workers to respond to power outages and imploring residents to ease up on their thermostats.

Ferguson fire continues destructive path toward Yosemite National Park

The deadly Ferguson fire continued its march toward Yosemite National Park this weekend, growing to more than 30,000 acres.

Ferguson fire is burning in 'some of the most unforgiving topography in the central Sierra,' Forest Service says

It’s taken about two weeks but firefighters have just about shored up their defenses around the densest neighborhoods at risk from a forest fire burning west of Yosemite National Park, authorities said.

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Five years after a massive fire near Yosemite, political 'miracle' erodes as Trump demands more logging

The Rim fire in 2013 brought devastation to a vast swath of Sierra Nevada forests west of Yosemite National Park. But the third largest wildfire in state history also seemed for a while to have worked a political miracle — at least for a time.

More evacuations ordered, two firefighters injured as Ferguson fire grows to 21,000 acres

Two firefighters were injured Tuesday battling the Ferguson fire, which ignited late Friday near Yosemite National Park.

Thunderstorms pose possible new danger for crews battling 17,300-acre fire near Yosemite

A forecast of thunderstorms posed possible new dangers for crews fighting the Ferguson fire near Yosemite National Park

Deadly wildfire near Yosemite National Park almost doubles in size to 9,300 acres

A wildfire burning west of Yosemite National Park doubled in size overnight while crews scrambled to set up defenses around nearby homes, officials said.

Firefighters make significant progress in wildfires burning across Southern California

Firefighters in Santa Barbara County continue mop-up operations after battling a wildfire that destroyed about 20 structures; the Holiday fire was 80% contained Sunday.

'I have happy tears,' Goleta resident says after finding his home survived destructive wildfire

The Holiday fire in Goleta was 80% contained Sunday, with full containment expected by Wednesday, according to the Santa Barbara County Fire Department. Ten homes were destroyed and three damaged; another nine structures were destroyed.

Fire crews make progress in Goleta as some residents return to find charred ruins

The 400-acre Holiday fire was 80% contained as firefighters Saturday continued to battle the destructive blaze that has snaked through a hillside area of Goleta, one of several fires that destroyed homes amid a record-setting heat wave in Southern California.

Another night of terror and calamity for Santa Barbara County as new destructive fire sweeps through

Firefighters get a handle on the Holiday fire, but not before homes are lost in yet another weekend of terror and loss in Santa Barbara County, which has endured more than its share of calamity in recent months.

Homes destroyed by fires and temperature records shattered as heat wave slams Southern California

The heat wave, coupled with moderate winds, helped fan nearly a dozen fires across the region, the most serious of which was burning homes and other structures near Alpine.

Fires destroy homes and spark mass evacuations amid Southern California heat wave

The worst of this week’s heat wave hit Southern California on Friday, sparking several brush fires, including one that was burning homes and other structures in San Diego County.

Gone in a flash: Goleta family's home of 25 years is lost to fire

Goleta residents Carrie Givens, 63, and her husband, John, 67, lost their home of 25 years. Their four-bedroom, split-level house was built into a hillside overlooking their 10-acre organic vegetable farm.

A forecast of record-breaking heat and dry wind sparks brush fire worries across the state

A brush fire in Northern California continued to grow overnight and threatens nearly 1,000 homes and businesses, authorities said.

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