Governor Asks for Federal Aid as State Battles 17 Wildfires

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Law enforcement officials said the last four people reported as missing were found safe on Wednesday. Jerry Brown called on Trump to help the state deal with the deadly and destructive wildfire season.

"The president has been pretty good on helping us in disasters, so I'm hopeful", Brown said, according to The Associated Press, which noted the governor has clashed with the president on immigration and environmental policies. "Tragedies bring people together".

The Mendocino is one of 17 major wildfires burning across California that prompted US President Donald Trump to declare a "major disaster" in the state, ordering federal funding to be made available to help recovery efforts.

Traffic passes through heavy smoke from the River Fire at sunset as it threatens the town of Lakeport Calif. Aug. 3 2018
Traffic passes through heavy smoke from the River Fire at sunset as it threatens the town of Lakeport Calif. Aug. 3 2018

The agency says Sunday night that the Ranch Fire is now 23 per cent contained, and the River Fire is now 58 per cent contained. "A fire that is burning very hot develops its own weather by drawing in winds that exceed ambient weather conditions", the National Weather Service wrote in a tweet. It has scorched 443 square miles (1,148.4 square kilometers), fire officials said Monday. The fires have killed at least eight people, stretching the state's funds and resources thin as firefighters try to gain control.

In the Sierra Nevada, firefighters achieved 41 percent containment of the Ferguson Fire, a forest fire that has shut down Yosemite Valley and other adjacent portions of Yosemite National Park at what is normally the height of summer tourism. Yellow areas represent the fire perimeter.

Yosemite Valley residents must leave the valley by noon Friday, National Park Service officials said.

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Crews battling the wildfires across Northern California are bracing for hot and windy weather this weekend.

The fires, north of San Francisco, have burned 75 homes and is only 30 percent contained. The Bee reports that a mandatory evacuation order was issued for the area, including all campgrounds and homes. A Red Flag Warning is in effect in Lake County from 11 a.m. Friday until 11 p.m. Saturday due to gusty winds and low humidity in fire weather zones. More than 1,000 homes have been razed and 9,000 residents remain evacuated from their homes, he said.

Meteorologist Steve Anderson said temperatures will remain in the 90s in the region throughout the week with wind gusts reaching 25 miles per hour during the day Sunday.

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The fire remained several miles from the evacuated communities along the eastern shore of Clear Lake but "it looks like there's dicey weather on the way", California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection spokeswoman Jane LaBoa said.

The wildfire about 225 miles (360 kilometers) north of San Francisco started more than two weeks ago by sparks from the steel wheel of a towed-trailer's flat tire.

Southeast of Redding, a blaze moved deeper into the Mendocino National Forest, "an area with some hunting cabins and some private property but no towns", Lake County Sheriff Lt. Corey Paulich said.

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The fire has killed six people, including two firefighters, and destroyed 1,060 homes and almost 500 other buildings, including businesses, barns and warehouses, officials said.

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