Published: Wed, October 11, 2017
Worldwide | By Sean Reid

Wind Drives Canyon Fire 2 Across Thousands of Acres

Wind Drives Canyon Fire 2 Across Thousands of Acres

The fire erupted during the fall's first significant blast of Santa Ana winds, the seasonal gusts linked to some of the region's worst wildfires.

Meanwhile, fires are also raging in northern California's wine country, which is around 430 miles 700km (430 miles) north of Anaheim.

Because of the speed of the fire, responders were not attacking the blaze directly, focusing instead on moving people out of its path, said Steven Beech, an incident commander with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.

The fires have destroyed at least 1,500 structures and forced the evacuation of 20,000 residents. The Los Angeles County Fire Department sent some 80 firefighters grouped into three strike teams.

Principal Graham Rutherford estimated that up to 18 of the school's 35 classrooms are likely destroyed.

Taken as a group, the fires are already among the deadliest in California history.

A fast-moving brush fire broke out near the 91 and 241 freeways just before 10 a.m. on Monday, about a mile from where the Canyon Fire burned two weeks ago.

Firefighters are concentrating on saving people rather than battling the blazes - which are still out of control.

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Black tells the Santa Rosa Press Democrat (http://bit.ly/2wLgBge ) that most of the Oakmont area was evacuated earlier in the day due to rampant wildfires. Originally horses were being evacuated to the Orange County Fair & Event Center, but it is now full, so authorities are recommending the furthest away shelter at the Los Alamitos Race Course.

"We have constant staffing", Bastman added, so there's no fear about limited resources, she said. Wyatt said officials would consider opening more evacuation centers if the need arose.

This report will be updated as more information becomes available.

The fires have been among the largest and most damaging in the state's history.

Residents in Napa and Sonoma counties are describing their terrifying middle-of-the-night scramble to flee from raging wildfires.

Fire remains at 7,500 acres with a jump in containment to 25%, up from 5%.

Ruttledge says she looked out her window and saw the mountain across the road on fire.

"We are monitoring the situation minute by minute and will resume classes when the local fire and health authorities, as well as campus leadership, determine that it is safe, " said Chapman spokeswoman Sheri Ledbetter.

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