The Caldor Fire raging in California’s El Dorado County has spread to 104,309 acres, with only 5 percent containment, authorities have said, adding that more homes and businesses were threatened since the fire jumped Highway 50.
The currently most active fire in California cut a 64.3 km stretch of Highway 50 in the Sierra Nevada Mountains area, said the Inciweb, an interstate incident information system, in an update on Sunday.
As a transcontinental road in the US, the California portion of Highway 50 is a busy route linking the state’s capital city and Lake Tahoe, one of the most famous tourist attractions in the country, reports Xinhua news agency.
The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire) said in a Sunday briefing that they do not anticipate reopening Highway 50 in the near future as the blaze still posed a threat to the communities along the road and those travelling on that road.
As of Sunday, Cal Fire said 328 structures had been confirmed destroyed, and 13,114 structures remain threatened.
A video from the local KCRA 3 news channel showed that Grizzly Flats, a once wooded area which roughly 1,200 people called home, was hardly recognizable now after being burned through by the fire last Tuesday.
Many of its neighborhoods and businesses were torched down, leaving mostly debris. Deputies with the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office were dispatched to the Grizzly Flats and nearby areas to patrol after receiving several reports of looting, the report said.
In total, 1,618 firefighters are battling the fire, which started on August 14, and two people were seriously injured, Cal Fire said.
Cal Fire on Sunday said that containment remained low for the fire, which was intentional because the crews’ main focus had been reducing the active threat to structures in the path of the fire’s spread.
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