McKinney Fire is California’s Largest of 2022, Burning 51,000 Acres

A fast-moving wildfire caused by strong winds from thunderstorms and high temperatures in northern California has engulfed more than 51,000 acres in two days, becoming the state’s largest wildfire ever this year. Forcing evacuation in the areas.

The fire, named the McKinney fire, began burning through dry wood in the Klamath National Forest in Siskiyou County, California, on Friday, officials said.

Officials had not reported any injuries or deaths in the fire as of Sunday morning. California Governor Gavin Newsom declared A state of emergency for Siskiyou County on Saturday, it said about 2,000 people were under immediate evacuation orders. Courtney Creder, a spokeswoman for the Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Office, said an additional 1,000 people were placed under evacuation orders.

As of Sunday morning, the fire had not reached much closer to the city of Yereka, in which approx 7,800. population of, But it had already destroyed more than a dozen homes and other structures in the surrounding area, Ms Crader said, and that number was expected to rise.

The heat from the fire produced a giant cloud called the pyrocumulonimbus, which is calledfire-breathing dragon of cloudsAccording to the National Weather Service in Medford, Ore., “which essentially generates its own weather and reaches more than 39,000 feet in the sky.

“The fire created a thunderstorm that could have caused new fires nearby,” Brad Schaff, a meteorologist with the Weather Service in Medford, said by phone on Sunday.

The fire, which was zero percent as of Sunday morning, is one of more than 50 large wildfire and fire complexes that have burned in parts of the United States so far this year, according to National Interagency Fire Center, In the foothills of the Sierra Nevada in California, oak fires burned more than 19,000 acres and put thousands of homes and businesses at risk. that fire was almost 64 percent Includes Sunday.

The McKinney fires come at a precarious moment for the state, which, along with the Pacific Northwest, is experiencing unusually high temperatures this week as a heat wave blankets the region.

On Saturday, firefighters shifted their focus from battling the perimeter of the fire to helping residents evacuate and protect structures, According to the US Forest Service,

Videos and photos of the fire showed smoke rising from trees as flames covered the Kalamath National Forest with an orange glow. Cars ran on nearly empty roadways, and accompanied by officers Redding Police Department After seeing the forest burning from afar, residents helped to evacuate.

“Head to those in the Far North State,” State Emergency Services Office said on twitter on Saturday. “#McKinneyFire is moving rapidly and aggressively, driven by weather conditions.”

Three additional fires in the county – the China 2, Evans and Kelsey Creek fires – merged and burned about 115 acres, Ms Creder said. He said the fire in Kelsey Creek was caused by lightning overnight.

Officials and meteorologists were concerned about possible thunderstorms on Sunday to develop by Tuesday evening. Mr Shahaf said such thunderstorms could lead to more fires in the area if there is a power outage.

Smoke from the McKinney fire, however, can lower temperatures and “counteract some of those thunderstorm materials,” he said.

Nevertheless, Kalamath National Forest said Statement on Sunday that “these conditions can be extremely dangerous for firefighters” as erratic winds push fires in random directions.

“It makes for a challenging and complex forecast,” Mr Schaaf said.

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