With weary firefighters continuing their assault on several major wildfires wreaking devastation across Southern California, two new blazes fired up Thursday, adding to the region’s smoke-filled misery.
At least 190,000 residents have been evacuated as 5,700 firefighters work to contain the blazes, Cal Fire officials said.
Edward Aguilar runs through flames from the Thomas Fire to save his cats at his mobile home along Highway 33 in Casita Springs in Ventura County on December 5.
Firefighters work to save burning houses along Linda Flora Drive in Los Angeles on December 6, 2017.
So far, 141,000 acres have burned in the six large wildfires in the state this week, according to Cal Fire officials.
The 4,100-acre fire is moving at an “extremely rapid rate,” and burning west toward the Vista and Oceanside communities, officials said.
To the north in Ventura County, the numbers were much more ominous. The four-day old Thomas Fire had burned 115,000 acres and destroyed 439 buildings, damaging 85 others.
Another new fire, just to the north of the Lilac Fire, had consumed 300 acres. That blaze, called the Liberty Fire, is 10% contained.
A total of 20 structures were destroyed, according to Cal Fire. Many of those were mobile homes in a community next to where the fire started, said Ron Lane, the deputy chief administrative officer for San Diego County.