100 Homes and Buildings Destroyed in Northern California Wildfire

A wildfire that started near the property of a lumber mill in Northern California swept through a nearby neighborhood, destroying about 100 homes and buildings.

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NBC News has learned that about 100 homes and other buildings in Northern California were destroyed by a wildfire over the weekend. 

It is believed that the wildfire started just before 1 p.m. Friday near the property of the defunct lumber mill for Roseburg Forest Products. According to CBS News, Sue Tavalero, council member for the town of Weed, said thousands of residents of Weed, as well as the neighboring communities of Lake Shastina and Edgewood, were told to evacuate as the flames raged through the Lincoln Heights neighborhood. 

Video of the #MillFire burning off of Mill St. in Weed, courtesy of Joshua Phenix. All of Weed is under a MANDATORY EVACUATION ORDER. LEAVE NOW! #cawx #fireseason2022 pic.twitter.com/YP7KrfNGOh

— Joshua Culbreth (@JoshCulbrethWX) September 2, 2022

Cal Fire Siskiyou Unit Chief Phil Anzo said on Saturday that 25 percent of the Mill Fire had been contained, with one person hospitalized but in stable condition, and another transferred to UC Davis Medical Center, which has a burn unit. Siskiyou County Sheriff-Coroner​ Jeremiah LaRue told the​​​​​​ New York Times that two women, ages 66 and 73, were killed. 

A state of emergency has been declared by California Gov. Gavin Newsom for Siskiyou County. 

The Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Office said the wildfire was aided by the high temperature and strong winds. The National Weather Service issued a red flag warning for Siskiyou County on Friday as winds were expected to reach upwards of 31 MPH. LaRue pointed out Weed was originally meant to be a lumber town because of its windy conditions, which allow for timber to dry, but whenever flames erupt, it’s “like a blowtorch.” 

The problem was compounded by a separate Mountain fire causing additional evacuations, mostly from those in the community of Gazelle. Officials told the Los Angeles Times that, as of Saturday night, the fire was five percent contained. 

The cause of the Mill Fire is under investigation.  

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