NPR logo California Wildfire Blazes Through 60,000 Acres, Containment Estimated Next Week

America

California Wildfire Blazes Through 60,000 Acres, Containment Estimated Next Week

The "Rocky Fire" isn't expected to be contained until Aug. 10. i

The "Rocky Fire" isn't expected to be contained until Aug. 10. Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images
The "Rocky Fire" isn't expected to be contained until Aug. 10.

The "Rocky Fire" isn't expected to be contained until Aug. 10.

Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images

As wildfires continue to blaze across California, one fire is more expansive in its reach than others. It's called Rocky Fire, and it began last week. It has already burned through at least 60,000 acres.

The Rocky Fire, one of numerous active wildfires in the state, is north of San Francisco, and member station KQED reports it is roughly double the size of the city.

Cal Fire says almost 3,000 firefighters — using four airtanker planes, 19 helicopters and 285 fire engines — have been "working aggressively to build control lines and sustain perimeter control."

But, the agency says, the terrain is challenging. It's "steep and rugged with limited access, fuels are at critical levels and there is little to no fire history in the area." More than 13,000 people have been urged to evacuate.

Rocky Fire has destroyed 24 residences and threatens more than 6,000 other structures, according to Cal Fire, which writes that the fire may be contained by Aug. 10.

KQED reports that the good news is that the firefighters working to contain the blaze have made progress: "Fire lines have now been completed around 12 percent of the fire perimeter, up from the constant 5 percent reported over the last several days."

Our Newscast unit reported on Monday that fire officials cite four years of drought in California as fuel for the wildfires.

As we reported this weekend, Gov. Jerry Brown has declared a state of emergency.

You can see photos of the fire in a roundup by KQED here.

Comments

 

Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the NPR.org Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.