VENTURA COUNTY, Calif. — Pushed by powerful Santa Ana winds, a Southern California fire continues to spread with explosive speed to thousands of acres, forcing thousands to evacuate.
Thousands of homes in Ventura and Santa Paula are under mandatory evacuation as fire officials warned that the powerful winds could turn the flames toward the city of Ventura. The fire is rapidly spreading with 0 percent containment.
The winds will pick up, with gusts up to 64 mph, before they taper down again. Humidity will be super dry — less than 10%. Red flag warnings will be in effect through Saturday night, 24 hours later than originally predicted.
More than 100,000 acres in Southern California have burned with little containment. Overworked firefighters caught a little bit of a break Wednesday when the winds eased somewhat, but the forecast for the next three days was bad news on top of bad news.
“The fire is still out of control and structures are threatened throughout the fire area,” according to the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office. “Due to the intensity of the fire, crews are having trouble making access, but there are multiple reports of structures on fire.”