rowing Caldor Fire prompts evacuation orders in California.
A rapidly expanding wildfire in Northern California seriously injured two people and prompted
mandatory evacuation orders for thousands of residents and tourists in El Dorado County on Tuesday morning.
The Caldor Fire, which ignited Saturday evening in the Omo Ranch area, about 60 miles east of Sacramento,
exploded Tuesday from 6,500 acres in the morning to roughly 30,000 acres by the evening hours, according to
the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, or Cal Fire.
It remains zero percent contained.
Firefighters continue to face dynamic conditions on the ground. Smoke from the nearby Dixie Fire hampered air
attack efforts while the shapeshifting nature of the Caldor Fire has made it difficult for officials to accurately map
the incident, Cal Fire officials said during a community meeting Tuesday evening.
“We are here to see this until the end,” said Cal Fire incident commander Dusty Martin.
Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency for El Dorado County earlier in the day, mobilizing the California National Guard and freeing up additional resources for impacted communities.
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Residents in the town of Grizzly.
Residents in the town of Grizzly Flats hit hard by the fire. Two people airlifted with serious injuries and
very few homes were left standing in Grizzly Flats, a town of about 1,200 residents, where streets were littered
with downed power lines and poles.
Houses were reduced to smoldering ash and twisted metal with only chimneys rising above the ruins.
A post office and elementary school were also destroyed.
“Night firefighting and challenging terrain made accessing the fire difficult,” the El Dorado Sheriff’s Office said in a statement. “The fire burned very actively throughout the night.”
Authorities expanded evacuation orders for neighboring communities Tuesday morning including for residents in
Sly Park, Happy Valley, and the Grizzly Flats and Somerset areas while campers rushed out of the Sly Park
Nearly 17,000 people across California are under evacuation orders, according to the California Governor’s Office
of Emergency Services, or Cal OES.
This year saw extreme heat that helped fuel fires across the Western United States, which exacerbated by climate change.
The growing threat of the Dixie Fire, the largest burning blaze in the U.S. and the second-largest in California
history may force more than 39,000 customers across 16 counties to lose power to prevent more wildfires,
according to the state’s largest utility, Pacific Gas and Electric.
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