Mon. May 23rd, 2022

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Californians evacuated as biggest ever wildfire rips town apart in horror blaze

3 min read

Raging wildfire is tearing through homes after three weeks blazing through California's mountains.

Strong winds on Tuesday caused the state's largest wildfire to explode yet again as the perfect storm of unrelenting hot and dry weather is hit by 40mph winds.

Shocking images show the devastation caused by the Dixie fire as it burnt through downtown Greenville, California on Wednesday.

Now 200,000 acres of north California has been burned by the Dixie fire while 15,000 more has been destroyed by the McFarlane blaze, which was ignited by lightning.

Firefighters such as Battalion Chief Sergio Mora, are tackling a losing battle against the seemingly unstoppable flames overwhelming their resources.

Homes and businesses already scorched by the Dixie fire in Greenville are only the first of many more as it spreads across the town into residential communities.

Residents of two communities in particular whose livelihoods look likely to be destroyed by the fire, have been told to evacuate immediately.

High winds in California are continuing to blow the roaring flames further through the town.

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Shannon Prather from the US Forest Service said: "I think we definitely have a few hard days ahead of us."

Fire officials said about 15,000 more people have been ordered to evacuate their homes and flee the area since the wildfire picked up once more, The Guardian reports.

So much smoke has been produced from burning mountainside forests that what is known as a pyrocumulus cloud, formed.

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Mike Wink, a state fire operations section chief said the massive column of smoke had risen to 30,000ft in the air, turning the sky black.

Hard-working firefighters successfully saved homes in the Dixie Fire's path, but a red flag warning was scheduled for Wednesday afternoon into Thursday.

Winds as fast as 40 mph are expected to push flames along the northern and north-eastern sides of the vast wildfire, burning all timber, bush and grass in its path.

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The same dangerous weather is forecasted for southern California's interior valleys, mountains and deserts throughout the week.

Since it first broke out on July 14, the Dixie fire has burnt down 67 properties and threatened thousands more. According to The Guardian It was 35% contained.

About 150 miles west of the Dixie fire, lightning sparked the McFarland fire which put remote homes built in the Shasta-Trinity national forest at risk.

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With it only being 5% contained, drought-stricken vegetation turned to ash as it doubled in size daily, fire officials warned.

Over the past 30 years climate change has made North America's west increasingly hot and dry which makes wildfires breaking out all the more likely, scientists say.

Weather in the region is projected to get only more extreme bringing with it frequent and destructive natural disasters.

More than 20,000 firefighters and support personnel are currently working to bring under control nearly 100 large wildfires, ripping through 13 US states.

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