BREAKING NEWS August Complex: Hwy 36 closed in portions of Trinity County Full Story

Crews try to tame California wildfire as heat wave arrives

The blaze is driving through brushy ridgetops, including areas that last burned in 1968.

Posted: Aug 13, 2020 12:59 PM

LOS ANGELES — Crews scrambled to protect homes from a huge wildfire that prompted evacuations north of Los Angeles and officials warned the blaze could flare up again Thursday as a blistering heat wave descended on California.

The fire exploded in size within hours after it broke out in dense forest on Wednesday afternoon, sending up a towering plume visible for hundreds of miles around.

Flames raced across ridges and steep slopes, including in some areas that had not burned since 1968, fire officials said. By Thursday morning, the blaze had consumed nearly 16.5 square miles (42 square kilometers) of timber and brush. There was no containment.

Light winds and scattered thundershowers early in the day helped firefighters tame the flames somewhat. But as the cloud cover cleared and temperatures spiked Thursday afternoon, officials prepared for a repeat of the ferocious fire activity seen a day earlier.

“This will be a major fire for several days,” said Chief Robert Garcia with the U.S. Forest Service.

About 100 rural homes were evacuated in the Lake Hughes area of the Angeles National Forest, some 60 miles (97 kilometers) north of downtown Los Angeles.

Preliminary damage assessments found that at least three structures burned, but authorities warned the toll would likely be higher. It wasn’t immediately clear if any residences were damaged, but a photograph for The Associated Press showed what may have been a house on fire.

Evacuation centers were designated for residents and animals, but because of COVID-19 concerns, people were told to stay in their cars in the parking lots.

The cause of the blaze, dubbed the Lake Fire, is under investigation. It’s one of several wildfires burning in the region.

The heat wave was expected to last through the weekend, bringing triple-digit temperatures and extreme fire danger to large portions of California.

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 799516

Reported Deaths: 15393
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Los Angeles2644146455
Riverside578831179
San Bernardino53359918
Orange526221182
San Diego45596773
Kern31712360
Fresno28019362
Sacramento21872399
Alameda20951397
Santa Clara20756304
San Joaquin20126437
Stanislaus16436345
Contra Costa16238204
Tulare15829259
Ventura12591146
Imperial11741317
San Francisco1094699
San Mateo9714144
Monterey970170
Santa Barbara8973113
Merced8828140
Kings756977
Sonoma7262120
Marin6641114
Solano627863
Madera445865
Placer353544
San Luis Obispo347929
Butte279043
Yolo278255
Santa Cruz22949
Sutter168911
Napa165313
San Benito132111
Yuba11367
El Dorado10884
Mendocino89418
Shasta75916
Lassen7360
Glenn5713
Tehama5334
Lake53011
Nevada5286
Colusa5246
Humboldt4967
Calaveras31414
Amador29616
Tuolumne2274
Inyo18715
Mono1652
Siskiyou1630
Del Norte1381
Mariposa752
Plumas500
Modoc250
Trinity150
Sierra60
Alpine20
Unassigned00
Chico
Broken Clouds
77° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 65°
Feels Like: 78°
Oroville
Clear
79° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 64°
Feels Like: 80°
Paradise
Broken Clouds
77° wxIcon
Hi: 78° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 78°
Chester
Clear
71° wxIcon
Hi: 75° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 71°
Red Bluff
Clear
81° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 64°
Feels Like: 81°
Willows
Broken Clouds
77° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 61°
Feels Like: 78°
Mostly mild conditions are ahead for your Friday, but big changes are ahead for your weekend. Hotter temperatures, gusty north winds, and very dry conditions will result in high fire danger this weekend. Very hot conditions are ahead for next week.
KHSL Severe
KHSL Radar
KHSL Temperatures

Community Events