Firefighters still struggling to douse wildfires in Northern California

Firefighters still struggling to douse wildfires in Northern California

More than 2,000 firefighters and 19 helicopters are still struggling to douse two forest fires that were sparked by lightning in far Northern California on August 11.

The two fires in the Klamath National Forest around a mile east of the gold mining town of Happy Camp are the largest among several wildfires that broke out in the forest by lightening. The two fires initially erupted miles apart from each other, but they merged by Saturday morning and together burnt more than 90 square miles.

Marc Peebles, a spokesperson for the U. S. Forest Service, said low humidity and warm weather along with trees parched by the region's persistent drought helped the fires in expanding at a fast rate.

Speaking about the fires, Peebles said, "These trees are very stressed. They are very dry. Firefighters are seeing burning conditions like they have never seen before or for many years."

However, cloudy skies, lighter winds and lower temperatures helped slow the wildfires on the western flank of the fire on Saturday.

Firefighters have so far managed to contain only 15 per cent of the blazes. Another series of blazes burning in the national forest around 69 miles south of Happy Camp that erupted on July 31 have been contained 73 per cent.

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