Deadly Cal­i­for­nia wild­fires flare up and swal­low more homes

Starkville Daily News - - AROUND TOWN - By JONATHAN J. COOPER and JO­CE­LYN GECKER As­so­ci­ated Press

SANTA ROSA, Calif. (AP) — Wild­fires tear­ing through Cal­i­for­nia wine coun­try flared up again Wednesday, de­stroy­ing hun­dreds more homes and other build­ings and lead­ing to new evac­u­a­tion or­ders as au­thor­i­ties raised the death toll to 21 and warned that the num­ber would rise.

At least 3,500 homes and busi­nesses have been de­stroyed since the wild­fires started Sun­day, mak­ing them the third dead­li­est and most de­struc­tive blazes in state his­tory.

Nearly three days after the flames ig­nited in North­ern Cal­i­for­nia, firefighters were still un­able to gain con­trol of the blazes, which were grow­ing in num­ber. Cal­i­for­nia Depart­ment of Forestry and Fire Pro­tec­tion spokesman Daniel Ber­lant said 22 wild­fires were burn­ing, up from 17 on Tues­day.

Flames have raced across the wine-grow­ing re­gion and the scenic coastal area of Men­do­cino far­ther north, leav­ing lit­tle more than smol­der­ing ashes and eye-sting­ing smoke in their wake.

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