California wildfire devastates 34 square miles of land

Leroy Wright
September 8, 2018

That blaze, the Carr Fire, was declared contained just last week.

The Delta Fire erupted Wednesday afternoon and within hours had devoured almost 8 square miles - 5,000 acres - of timber and brush on both sides of Interstate 5 near the OR state line.

The Delta Fire burns in the Shasta-Trinity National Forest, Calif., on Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2018.

Drivers fled in terror and several big rigs burned on Wednesday as the fire erupted on both sides of the route.

A fast-moving wildfire has shut down a almost 50-mile stretch of one the busiest freeways in Northern California, after it torched at least two big rigs and forced motorists to flee cars and trucks as the state endures one of its worst fire seasons.

Although the fire was not burning near any large towns, Mr Vacarro said about 280 homes were considered threatened.

Since igniting Wednesday afternoon in a rural area north of Lakehead in Shasta County, the Delta Fire has rapidly burned more than 15,000 acres of land, including terrain on either side of Interstate 5 near the OR border.

The wildfire closed down dozens of miles of a major California freeway only weeks after a nearby blaze left neighborhoods in ruins and killed eight people.

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The fast-moving fire forced truck drivers to abandon their rigs on the highway.

The sheriff's offices in Shasta and Trinity counties have issued evacuation orders, and the Siskiyou County Sheriff's Office warned some residents to evacuate.

'It isn't a lot of people, ' he said.

The two fires destroyed or damaged a combined 8,800 homes and 329 businesses.

"The worst may be yet to come", Commissioner David Jones warned at a San Francisco news conference, noting that California wildfires are typically more destructive after September 1. Two were turned into twisted piles of melted metal. Cal Fire would use some of the money to add firefighters and helicopters, he said. The satellite passing 200 miles above the fire at 2:24 a.m Friday detected heat one or two miles farther north along both sides of Interstate 5, which is still closed, reaching nearly as far north as the off ramp at Fisher (see the map below).

"There's vehicles scattered all over", Brandon Vaccaro of the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection told the Redding Record Searchlight.

In the video, a woman is heard begging her boyfriend to get out of their vehicle and leave as the fire raged closer to them. As a result, Amtrak temporarily suspended its Coast Starlight passenger train service between Sacramento, California, and Klamath Falls, Oregon.

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