Wild­fires grow in Cal­i­for­nia

Western Mail - - NEWS -

THE largest and most de­struc­tive of the wild­fires in south­ern Cal­i­for­nia has grown to 140 square miles and fire of­fi­cials have said the worst may be yet to come.

The 90,000-acre fire burn­ing in Ven­tura County, north west of Los An­ge­les, has swept through ridges and canyons to the sea and Santa Ana winds that drove it are ex­pected to re­turn with a vengeance overnight.

State fire di­rec­tor Ken Pim­lott said winds that eased in the af­ter­noon could re­turn with gusts up to 80mph that would make it im­pos­si­ble to fight the fire.

Dozens of homes have burned since the blaze erupted on Mon­day. Nearly 1,800 fire­fight­ers and a fleet of air­craft are fight­ing the flames but the blaze is only 5% con­tained.

Ear­lier a wild­fire in a wealthy west­ern area of Los An­ge­les reached an es­tate and win­ery owned by me­dia mogul Ru­pert Mur­doch.

> Fire­fight­ers mon­i­tor a sec­tion of the Thomas Fire along the 101 free­way north of Ven­tura, Cal­i­for­nia

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