REDDING, Calif. (AP) — The Latest on California’s devastating wildfires (all times local):
More evacuations have been ordered as a devastating wildfire torches an area in and around the Northern California city of Redding.
The blaze that broke out Monday exploded late Thursday and raced into small communities west of Redding before entering the city limits.
Fire officials say dozens of homes have burned, though conditions make it impossible to determine an accurate count and the number could climb much higher.
A bulldozer operator on the fire lines was killed and three firefighters suffered burns. Some civilians also have been injured.
Mandatory evacuations were extended overnight to include the city of Shasta Lake, which has about 10,000 residents.
Parts of Redding, which has about 92,000 residents and is the largest city in the region, also have been evacuated.
An explosive wildfire tore through two small Northern California communities, killing a bulldozer operator on the fire lines, burning three firefighters, destroying dozens of homes and forcing thousands of terrified residents to flee.
Flames swept through the communities of Shasta and Keswick before jumping the Sacramento River on Thursday and reaching Redding It’s a city of about 92,000 people and the largest in the region.
Residents in the western part of Redding who hadn’t been under evacuation orders were caught off guard and had to flee with little notice, causing miles-long traffic jams as flames turned the skies orange.
Many firefighters turned their focus from the flames to getting people out alive.