Friday, August 28, 2009

California governor puts LA County in emergency state due to burning wildfires

Xinhua: The Californian governor Arnold Schwarzenegger proclaimed a state of emergency in Los Angeles County Friday as wildfires in four separate sites continue burning in the region. In announcing the order, Schwarzenegger said that the "circumstances of these fires, by reason of their magnitude, are or are likely to be beyond the control of the services, personnel, equipment and facilities of any single county, city and county, or city and require the combined forces of a mutual aid region or regions to combat."

Fire crews are battling two separate blazes in the Angeles National Forest in the Los Angeles County. More than 3,000 acres (1214 hectares) of land have been consumed and hundreds of homes under threat. A separate fire in Rancho Palos Verdes sent more than 1,000 people scurrying from the homes. Six homes were slightly damaged in the blaze, which broke out Thursday evening.

The 125-acre (50.6 hectares) Rancho Palos Verdes Fire was 70 percent contained, and evacuation orders were lifted by late morning.

The firefighters have engaged themselves in aerial and ground actions in a bid to contain and put out the blazes swept across the rugged and largely inaccessible hilly terrains. Air tankers and helicopters continued to drop water over the flame throughout the day, and fire engines, siren wailing, kept rushing to the scene from other places in the region….

Foothill Ranch, Orange County, CA. Santiago Canyon Fire in October 2007. View from Overlook Park as helicopters fly very low and spray into Whiting Ranch. Shot by Alex Miroshnichenko, Wikimedia Commons via Flickr, under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 License.

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