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Wildfire explodes to third-largest in California history

Posted at 8:51 AM, Aug 06, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-06 14:20:38-04

GREENVILLE, Calif. (AP) — A wildfire raging in Northern California exploded in size overnight, becoming the third-largest wildfire in state history amid high temperatures and strong winds.

The Dixie Fire grew by 110 square miles between Thursday night and Friday morning, expanding to a size larger than New York City.

It had been burning for weeks, mostly in remote wildland areas with few people, before it tore through the little mountain community of Greenville, which is now in ashes.

No injuries or deaths have been reported. But the fire threatens more than 10,000 homes.

In Placer and Nevada counties crews are working to get a handle on the River Fire, which has proven to be extremely destructive in a short period of time.

The blaze ignited Wednesday afternoon but so far has destroyed 76 homes and buildings.

Another 20 have also been damaged.

As the fire grows. some residents are taking matters into their own hands to help save their property.

"Well it was a cross between 'Apocalypse Now' and 'Wizard of Oz,' " said Eric Gibbs, a Grass Valley resident. "There was propane tanks blowing up left and right."