The nation’s biggest wildfire burned nearly half a mile of arid forest in Oregon and forced the evacuation of a wildlife research facility Monday after firefighters withdrew from the blaze for the ninth day in a row because of erratic and dangerous wildfire behavior.
“We are running firefighting operations through the day and all through the night,”Joe Hessel
“We are running firefighting operations through the day and all through the night,” Fire Operations Administrator Joe Hessel said.
The devastating bootleg fire in southwest Oregon, north of the California border, has been growing to more than 476 square miles, roughly the size of Los Angeles.
The fire, 25% contained, has burned at least 67 homes and 100 buildings and threatens tens of thousands other in a remote countryside of forests, lakes and wildlife refuges.
The Tamarack fire had scorched about 36 square kilometers (30 square miles) by Monday.
“With the very dry fuels, any thunderstorm has the potential to ignite new fire starts,” the National meteorological service posted on Twitter in Sacramento, California.
In the Pacific northwest alone, at least 16 large fires were being fought, the Forest Service said.
Pacific Gas & Electric Equipment could have been a contributor at the outbreak of the Dixie fire, the nation’s biggest utility, reported to California regulators.