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Klamathon Fire ignites in Hornbrook, prompting I-5 closure

08 July, 2018, 03:57 | Author: Priscilla Morrison
  • HORNBROOK Ore. – A local community is being partially evacuated due to a wildfire in Siskiyou County

We had to evacuate, Fairview Road is on fire and winds are very intense.

Bushfires in the west of the United States have killed one person and torched hundreds of homes, with new fires sweeping Southern California as the state struggles through a record-setting heatwave.

Eric Durtschi stood outside his destroyed house, where a burned-out vehicle stood in the driveway and kids' bicycles were strewn about. He woke at 5 a.m.to inspect the remains of their belongings and to compose himself before going to Santa Barbara to pick up his two oldest sons, who had been with a church youth group all week and didn't know their home was gone. He managed to collect his severely burned vintage guns, hoping to salvage them.

Meanwhile, a neighbor across the street saw his home spared.

The family stayed the night with friends in town, but Durtschi couldn't sleep.

The Klamathon Fire that started Thursday afternoon under windy conditions in northern California spread very quickly into the small community of Hornbrook.

The area was hit by gusty winds that tossed embers and much of Southern California sweltered as temperatures topped 100 degrees in many areas. There was little relief overnight.

Buliavac said the fire was spreading to the northeast and northwest of Hornbrook in the rugged, rural region.




A wildfire raging through drought-stricken timber and brush near California's border with OR killed one person and destroyed multiple structures as it burns largely out of control, authorities said Friday.

Siskiyou County Board of Supervisors chair Ray Haupt says the blaze moved so fast it quickly reached Hornbrook, a community of about 250 people about 14 miles (22 kilometers) south of the OR border. Ray Haupt, chairman of the county Board of Supervisors, said losses included homes and livestock.

The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection ( CAL FIRE) in a release issued at 7.30 p.m. local time (10.30 p.m. EDT) said, "Fire is 1000+ acres and 0% contained with multiple structures threatened". Ten structures were counted destroyed but damage assessments were continuing. One blaze reportedly burned at least five homes in Alpine.

In Colorado, firefighters took advantage of occasional rainstorms to extend their containment lines at several large wildfires.

A fast-moving brush fire in the Santa Barbara County community of Goleta has damaged or destroyed 20 homes and structures and was threatening scores more Saturday morning.

The Klamathon, which has destroyed 15 structures and blackened almost 22,000 acres (8,900 hectares), was only 5 percent contained as of Saturday.

It has forced a 35-mile stretch of U.S. Highway 40 to close since Wednesday, said Sonya Capek, a fire spokeswoman.

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