Firefighter dies in Mendocino Complex Fire

California Wildfires: Thoughtful Authorities Help Keep Pet Fish Alive After Homeowners Evacuate

The Holy Fire has scorched 21,473 acres since Monday after it ignited in the Cleveland National Forest's Holy Jim Canyon.

Thick smoke and ash spewing from the fire prompted air quality warnings. The River Fire started more than two weeks ago.

Forrest Gordon Clark, 51, was charged with aggravated arson and criminal threats, among other crimes, for allegedly starting the fire. He is being held at the Orange County Jail on $1 million bail.

Stay with FOX40 for more updates. Cal Fire explained the cause of fire as "mechanical failure of a vehicle".

The 190,873-acre (77,243-hectare) Carr Fire has destroyed almost 1,100 homes.

If all goes well, firefighters still don't expect to the have the massive blaze completely contained until sometime in September.

While it's not the largest burning in the state, the Holy Fire has raised concerns about effects on residential communities.

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"I've known Matt for a long time - over 20 years", said Draper Fire Battalion Chief Bart Vawdrey. It is still at 61 percent containment at 61 percent containment at over 201,000 acres.

"Firefighters continue working in steep, rugged terrain to increase and strengthen containment lines".

The fires come as much of the western USA has been gripped by hot, dry air. But now the Ranch Fire alone is the biggest single fire to ever scar the state. The fires had burned a combined total of 325,226 acres and was 67 percent contained.

A break in the brutal heat wave that has baked California for much of the summer gave firefighters a chance to attack a string of major wildfires across the state that have killed eight people and destroyed thousands of homes.

A firefighter monitors a backfire while battling the Ranch Fire, part of the Mendocino Complex Fire, on Tuesday, Aug. 7, 2018, near Ladoga, Calif. The fire is burning near the Mendocino National Forest, about 140 miles northwest of Sacramento.

The man accused of deliberately starting the fire appeared in court on Friday, but his arraignment was postponed. It has burned 1,000 acres and was 65 percent contained.

Zinke said it is ironic that environmental groups oppose access to federal lands to protect wildlife habitats when mismanagement of the land that results in fires destroys those habitats. Forward progress of the fire has been stopped.

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