Two dead as wildfire sweeps across Northern California.
Two people are dead Friday from a massive wildfire sweeping across Northern California, where dry conditions and triple-digit temperatures are expected to hamper efforts by firefighters to battle the blaze.
A firefighter and a bulldozer operator have died while battling the fire, according to Unified Incident Commander Chief Brett Gouvea.
“The fire community is extremely heartbroken for this loss,” Gouvea said at a press conference Thursday night.
In addition, several firefighters and civilians have been injured, he said.
The wildfire, known as the Carr Fire, crossed the Sacramento River Thursday night and is now closing in on the city of Redding. So far, it has destroyed 65 structures while damaging 55.
The fire had burned 44,450 acres as of Friday morning, an area larger than the size of Washington, D.C.
A number of people were evacuated from the area, including five infants from a hospital.
A recent heatwave in the area along with dry conditions have been fueling the fire, which was caused by a mechanical issue involving a vehicle.
The Carr Fire is the second largest of 16 wildfires in the state of California, according to the California Department of Fire and Forestry Protection. They include the Ferguson Fire, which has burned at least 45,911 acres, and the Cranston Fire, which has consumed 11,500 acres.
Forecasts for California have temperatures remaining near 100 degrees Fahrenheit (38 degrees Celsius) until early next week as firefighters try to bring the fires under control.