Los Angeles, CA — Multiple fires burning in Southern California have now scorched nearly 257,000 acres and destroyed over 9,000 structures.
By comparison, the 2013 Rim Fire in Tuolumne and Mariposa counties burned 257,314 acres. The largest incident currently burning is the Thomas Fire in Ventura and Santa Barbara counties, which has covered 230,500 acres. It is 15-percent contained and 95,000 residents remain evacuated. A Red Flag Fire Warning remains in effect for Los Angeles and Ventura counties today. Santa Ana wind gusts of 35-45 mph are expected to continue with the above normal temperatures. The second largest, the Creek Fire, near Kagel Canyon in Los Angeles County, is 15,619 acres and 95-percent contained. The Lilac Fire in San Diego County is 4,100 acres and 80-percent contained.
A large contingency of firefighters from the Mother Lode are assisting down south. From the CAL Fire Tuolumne-Calaveras Unit, it includes 29 overhead personnel assigned to leadership positions, three strike teams with 15 engines, four strike teams with eight hand crews, one Calaveras County local government strike team, a dozer and three strike team leaders. The Stanislaus National Forest has sent seven engines, one water tender and two dozers.
A total of 9,000 firefighters are assigned to the various incidents.
The lone air resource stationed at Columbia Air Attack base is Copter 404. All of the other aircraft had been moved weeks ago to other locations for the off-season, or sent in for winter maintenance.