Wildfires have spread to over 50,000 acres in Southern California’s Ventura County, destroying dozens of buildings and causing thousands to evacuate.
Hundreds of firefighters have been trying to contain the wildfire
The fire is believed to have started north of Santa Paula on Monday night before eventually spreading into Ventura, a city of over 100,000 people. The fast-acting fire, which had been pushed by powerful Santa Ana winds, forcing officers to go door-to-door to warn people to evacuate. By early Tuesday morning, the fire had burned 31K acres in a period of nine hours.
Hundreds of firefighters are working to contain the fire. At least one has been injured, having been hit by a car while protecting homes, and is now being treated at a nearby hospital. According to the New York Daily News, there has been at least one death connected to the fires, with the cause of death being a car accident, but the details concerning the incident are unclear at this time.
The fires have been compared to similar wildfires that sparked in the California area this October, claiming 40 lives and destroying 10,000 structures.
During a news conference, Ventura County Fire Chief Mark Lorenzen explained, via The L.A. Times:
“The prospects for containment are not good. Really, Mother Nature is going to decide.”
In a recent statement, Ventura County Sheriff Sgt. Eric Buschow added:
“The fire is actively burning in the city of Ventura and there are homes and buildings actively burning at this time.”
Update: According to ABC 10, Governor Brown issued the following statement:
This fire is very dangerous and spreading rapidly, but we’ll continue to attack it with all we’ve got.It’s critical residents stay ready and evacuate immediately if told to do so.
As this story is breaking, more information will be updated as made available.