How many people have been evacuated because of the Yosemite National Park fire?
Wildfires that have been raging for days and forced thousands to leave villages and towns in its path.
A wildfire which started on Friday has caused 6,000 people to evacuate their homes in Mariposa county, California. Due to the remotenes of the evacuations, there are not the facilities nearby to handle so many people.
“We’re full with evacuees,” said Alyssa Wildt, manager of a nearby hotel told the LA Times, “Today we have a bunch of fire crews looking for rooms,” Wildt said. “We don’t have them. I believe most of town is full.”
More than 400 firefighters have been brought in to tackle the blaze. Currently, the fire is on the south-west corner of the Yosemite National Park. A state of emergency has been declared in the county, meaning federal help can be sought to tackle the blaze.
“Explosive fire behaviour is challenging firefighters”, California’s fire department said.
So far, 16,216 acres have been burnt.
How did the fire begin?
The US has been grappling with excessive temperatures for the last two weeks, caused by a strong dome of high pressure over the Southern Plains and Mississippi Valley. Instead of heat being brought further south, the pressure is keeping the heat in place, pumping up temperatures.
More than 115 excessive heat warnings and heat advisories were released by the National Weather Service last week. An excessive heat warning kicks in when temperatures are expected to hit more than 105 degrees F. These temperatures are coinciding with Californian wildfire season. Humidity last week averaged 8 percent with the first years of this century the driest since at least the year 800.
‘The fire is moving quickly. This fire was throwing embers out in front of itself for up to two miles yesterday,’ Daniel Patterson, a spokesman for the Sierra National Forest, said. ‘These are exceptional fire conditions.’ The cause of the fire was under investigation.
When will the fire end?
Natasha Fouts, a spokeswoman for CalFire, said officials don’t expect to contain the fire until next week. At this stage, the fire is 0 percent contained despite its raging for multiple days.
The situation report on Monday says that, “Fire activity was not as extreme as it has been in previous days. Firefighters made good headway today.”