Unrelenting California wildfire threatens thousands of homes

Raging wildfires in Southern California have jumped highways and even made it to the Pacific Ocean and are now threatening upscale LA neighbourhoods like Bel Air and even the Getty museum.
An unrelenting wildfire fanned by hot, dry winds threatened more than 12,000 homes in and around Ventura, California, yesterday, forcing thousands of people to race for safety. The fire, dubbed the Thomas Fire, raged in the foothills above and in the
PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

An unrelenting wildfire fanned by hot, dry winds threatened more than 12,000 homes in and around Ventura, California, yesterday, forcing thousands of people to race for safety. The fire, dubbed the Thomas Fire, raged in the foothills above and in the city of Ventura some 80km north-west of Los Angeles, fire officials said late on Tuesday, a day after it began. It had charred more than 20,230ha of land, they said. The fire, which was zero per cent contained, was being whipped by unpredictable Santa Ana winds, which blow in from the California desert. Wind gusts were forecast to top out at 115kmh yesterday and remain strong through the week. There were no immediate reports of fatalities or civilian casualties. The Thomas Fire is the largest of several large blazes that broke out across Southern California following the onset of the Santa Ana winds.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 07, 2017, with the headline 'Unrelenting California wildfire threatens thousands of homes'. Print Edition | Subscribe