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Wildfire Roars Through Small California Town

  • VOA News

Carlos Orta, right, of Santa Cruz Calfire douses the smoldering remains of a home in Lower Lake, California, Aug. 15, 2016.

Carlos Orta, right, of Santa Cruz Calfire douses the smoldering remains of a home in Lower Lake, California, Aug. 15, 2016.

A wildfire raced through a rural Northern California town, destroying more than 100 homes and forcing thousands to flee.

"This fire roared through the city like a wave of water -- it was a wave of fire that came through here,'' Lt. Doug Pittman, a Marin County sheriff's spokesman said Monday.

No one was injured as the fire tore through Lower Lake, a town of about 1,300 people 100 miles north of San Francisco.

The blaze reached Main Street and burned the post office, a winery, an antiques store, a historic firehouse and an office of the Habitat for Humanity charity. At least 1,500 more structures were threatened.

Lake County has been the scene of several major fires in recent years. Last September, the Valley Fire killed four people and destroyed more than 1,300 homes as it ravaged a series of small towns just a half-hour from Lower Lake.

In central California, a wildfire near Lake Nacimiento, about 290 kilometers northwest of Los Angeles, grew Sunday and forced authorities to evacuate some residents by boat when it shifted toward the lake. It is partially contained.

Weather forecasters warned of high fire danger in Southern California because of dry conditions, a heat wave and gusty winds.

A wildfire in Nevada turned deadly when U.S. Forest Service firefighter Justin Beebe, 26, of Vermont, died after he was hit by a tree Saturday afternoon, authorities say.

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