Thomas Fire Takes Top Spot
Ventura, CA — The huge Southern California wildfire that has claimed the lives of two and destroyed over 1,000 structures in Santa Barbara and Ventura counties is now the largest in the state’s recorded history.
State fire officials declared the Thomas fire that after it reached 273,400 acres or about 427 square miles of scorched coastal foothills and national forest overnight. It took the number one slot by surpassing the 2003 Cedar Fire in San Diego by 154 acres. That fire killed 15 people.
As reported here, earlier this week Tuolumne County’s 2013 Rim Fire, which burned 257,314 acres and had held the number three spot, was bumped down to the fourth largest California wildfire.
Thousands of firefighters have been battling the blaze since Dec. 4. A firefighter and a woman fleeing the blaze died. The funeral for firefighter Cory Iverson was held today in San Diego. Iverson, who was stationed out of San Diego, has local ties to the Mother Lode, as back in 2015 he was based at the Columbia Air Attack and drove a Heli-tender truck.
The Thomas Fire remains 65 percent contained. Currently, 2,512 fire personnel remains on scene including 116 fire engines, 61 fire crews, 31 water tenders, 19 dozers and 26 helicopters. What sparked the blaze is still under investigation.
Click here for the Top 20 Fire List.