Wildfires continue to devastate southern California

A firefighter battles the Thomas fire in the town of La Conchita early Thursday

A firefighter battles the Thomas fire in the town of La Conchita early Thursday

The blaze, dubbed Thomas Fire, was the largest of several large blazes that broke out across Southern California following the onset of the Santa Ana winds. CAL FIRE said on Twitter.

The fire expanded to 4 square miles (10 square kilometers) in a matter of hours and tore through the tightly packed Rancho Monserate Country Club community in the small city of Fallbrook, known for its avocado orchards and horse ranches.

The blaze destroyed 20 structures and prompted evacuations and road closures.

About 500 firefighters were sent to battle the Skirball Fire, including 350 from the LAFD. Much of Southern California is also experiencing humidity levels in the teens or even single digits.

Firefighters and helicopters sprayed and dumped bucket-loads of water and fire retardant on flames against a hellish backdrop of flaming mountains and walls of smoke. "The drone will fly over, locate hotspots, and then we'll dispatch our firefighters to get final extinguishment in that area". Reactive moves by Congress to suspend environmental regulations and retreat to the good old days of logging are not the answer.

Flames burned a wine storage shed at media mogul Rupert Murdoch's 16-acre Moraga Vineyards estate and appeared to have damaged about 7 acres of vines, a spokeswoman said.

Residents are advised to avoid unnecessary outdoor activity and keep their windows and doors closed.

The Thomas Fire is moving fast.

Fears of more winds were also evident in the neighborhoods of Sylmar hit hard by the Creek fire. "We've never used purple before". "I even have a surfboard and a wetsuit in my backyard right now, if I need to paddle away". "Stay alert. Listen to authorities". Tim Lohman of the Ventura County Sheriff's Office said an unidentified body had been found overnight.

The Los Angeles Police Department is warning those in the area to cease using such apps.

Three firefighters were injured and taken to a hospital, where they were in stable condition, the Los Angeles Fire Department said on its website.

- Punk&Spice Latte (@sch4) December 6, 2017@waze 405 south and northbound in Los Angeles closed due to huge fire.

"I feel proud. I feel privileged to lead the men and women of the state of New Mexico to go out there", Fox said.

According to Pellerin, rendering this kind of aid is something the Buckskin Fire Department does often. These fires are fueled by some of the strongest Santa Ana winds in recent memory. Compounding problems Thursday were dry weather and merciless winds, with gusts predicted to reach the strength of a Category 1 hurricane in mountainous areas. Swarms of choppers. The helicopter overhead now. But Waze Thursday instead called for many backroads-which could be expected, but with no mention of the fire-related alternative route.

Lingering over recent California fires is the question of long-term climate change.

The Southern California wildfires spreading through Ventura and Los Angeles counties are among the devastating wildfires residential communities have seen in the decades since developers have expanded further and further onto land prone to natural disaster.

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