Inferno rages in California

Inferno rages in California

21 August 2007

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A forest fire has burned some 800 sq km in north of Los Angeles.

A forest fire has burned some 800 sq km of woodlands in north of Los Angeles as firefighters battle hard to extinguish the inferno.

The Zaca fire is predicted to continue burning for weeks, as officials predicted that the conflagration would exceed any of California’s previous rerecorded fires.

The fire burning in the Los Padres National Forest is growing, Maeton Freel, a fire information officer with the US Forest Service told the Ventura County Star.

The wildfire has cost over 83 million dollars to fight since its ignition on July 4 by sparks from equipment being used to repair a water pipe.

It is currently 75 percent contained and even the most optimistic projections do not envisage bringing it under control before September 7.

So far, the Zaca blaze has caused little damage, though officials urged the residents of some two dozen Ventura County homes to evacuate Monday.

The blaze ranks as the third largest in California history following the 1932 Matilija Fire, which scorched about 98 sq km.

The largest fire is the 2003 Cedar Fire near San Diego, which burned more than 128 sq km, destroyed 4847 structures, and killed 15 people.

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