State of emergency declared as people forced to evacuate several fires in California which have been spurred by extreme heat up to 42 degrees.
Wildfires prompt evacuations amid extreme heat wave in California
Extreme wildfires chewed through rural areas north of Los Angeles and east of San Diego, racing through bone-dry brush and prompting evacuations as California sweltered under a heat wave that could last days.
The Route Fire near Castaic in northwestern Los Angeles County raged through more than 8 square miles of hills containing scattered houses. Traffic was snarled on Interstate 5, a major north-south route running through fire area. Containment was estimated at 12 per cent.
Media reports showed a wall of flames advancing uphill and smoke billowing thousands of feet into the air while aircraft dumped water from nearby Castaic Lake. There were no immediate reports of damage to buildings but a mobile home park with 94 residences was evacuated.
An elementary school also was evacuated. Temperatures in the area on Wednesday hit 107 degrees (42 Celsius) and winds gusted to 17 mph (27 kph), forecasters said.