Two raging California wildfires grow, killing 1 and prompting closures in Los Padres National Forest

Firefighters battle a spot fire along Soledad Canyon Road near Agua Dulce on Tuesday.
(Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times)

As fire crews made progress controlling a deadly wildfire in Southern California on Wednesday, another blaze continued to rage along the state’s picturesque Central Coast, killing a heavy equipment operator and triggering numerous trail closures and hiker rescues in Los Padres National Forest.

The Sand and Soberanes fires, both of which erupted on Friday, tore through wildlands in Southern and Central California overnight with thousands of firefighters tackling unpredictable flames. Firefighters managed to gain 40% containment of the Sand fire, which has caused one death and destroyed 18 homes.